Photo: Keith Allison
Cincinatti Reds (4-2) @ Pittsburgh Pirates (3-2)
Tyler Glasnow (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs Brandon Finnegan (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
Time: Monday – 7:05
Tyler Glasnow gets his season debut against the Reds. A Reds team that, according to Steamer, projects to have just one above average hitter on the roster. That hitter is Joey Votto, the guy that is signed to make $25,000,000 as a 39 year old. Votto is an extremely patient hitter and will likely give Glasnow a lot of trouble. Other than him, Glasnow should not have a difficult time cruising through the Reds lineup. This could be one of Glasnow’s better matchups this season.
Brandon Finnegan is the best starting pitcher the Pirates will face this series. Last season was his first as a full time starter and he posted a 3.98 ERA. He is a lefty that throws a four-seamer, sinker, slider and changeup. Pirates hit lefties well, but Finnegan has enough pitches in his repertoire that he could give them issues. In his first start he faced a weak Phillies team and dominated them. He went 7 innings and only gave up 1 hit and 1 walk while striking out 9.
Josh Harrison took the day off on Sunday, but was hit by a pitch as a pinch hitter late in the game. He was removed after he struggled to leg out a single. With as well as Frazier has been playing, I think it is pretty likely that Harrison takes the day off again and Frazier slots into the lineup at 2nd base. Vegas has the Pirates at -142, or 59% chance to win.
Jameson Taillon (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs Rookie Davis (0-0, 12.00 ERA)
Time: Tuesday – 7:05
At 68-94 the Reds finished 2016 as one of the leagues worst teams and didn’t do much in the offseason to assume they will have an improved 2017. Their big acquisitions are Scott Feldman and Bronson Arroyo, both mediocre at best starting pitchers. Rookie Davis is a 23 year old rookie that utilizes a fastball and a curve to go along with a below average changeup. He was roughed up in his first start and will likely get get roughed up again against the Pirates
Jameson Taillon is coming off an excellent performance against a stacked Red Sox lineup. The Red Sox are far superior to the Reds, so I’d be shocked if the Reds gave Taillon any trouble.
Ivan Nova (1-0 0.00 ERA) vs Amir Garrett (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
Time: Wednesday – 7:05
The series finale features two pitchers that are 1-0 with 0.00 ERA’s. Nova got his win against the Braves and Garrett got his against the Cardinals. It was Garrett’s first career big league appearance and he allowed just 4 baserunners all game against the Cardinals. Despite that, he is still very raw. It is unlikely that he repeats his 0 runs given up performance against the Pirates.
Ivan Nova looked strong in his first start. He should have no problem limiting the Reds in this one. He only threw his offspeed stuff 17% of the time in his first start. It will be interesting to see if that increases back to last years average of about 35%.
Thursday is an away game at Boston scheduled for 2:05. This, combined with Garrett being a lefty, I can see possibly Polanco and Bell both getting days off.