With three wins in the last two days the Cincinnati Reds have climbed back to .500 at 5-5 on the year. This evening, in Game Two of the Ohio Cup, the Reds will look to go above .500 with a win over the in-state rival Cleveland Indians. The Tribe, now 5-6 this season, will be looking to snap a four game losing streak.
The primary reason that this Tuesday night affair earned #KSReds Game of the Week honors is because of Indians Starting Pitcher Shane Bieber. In his Opening Day start, Bieber struck out 14 batters in six innings as the Indians shut out the Royals to win 2-0. The 25 year old Right Hander then threw eight innings of three hit baseball against the Minnesota Twins on Thursday while striking out 13 on his way to another 2-0 victory. Even if you aren’t a Reds fan, tonight’s game will be worth watching simply to see Bieber pitch.
What will Shane Bieber do in his third start? pic.twitter.com/RBugQ1zZDF
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) August 4, 2020
Bieber, who tied the Major League record for most strikeouts recorded in a pitcher’s first two starts of a season, will go against Tyler Mahle of the Reds. Mahle got the start one week ago today while filling in for Anthony Desclafani who was on the Injured List. Against the Cubs, he pitched four innings giving six hits and two earned runs in the Reds 8-5 loss. Tonight’s first pitch is scheduled for 6:10 p.m. Eastern Time at Great American Ball Park.
Nick Senzel returns to the Reds lineup after missing last night’s game with a left ring finger injury he sustained in Sunday’s Double-Header while sliding into Second Base. Senzel has collected four doubles in his 21 at-bats so far this season. Nick Castellanos will look to stay hot in the 3-spot after earning National League Player of the Week honors for his great start to the season. Castellanos has hit safely in each game this season and will look to extend his hitting streak to 11 games tonight.
In order for the Reds to have a chance to win against Shane Bieber tonight they simple will have to get more out of Eugenio Suarez and Jesse Winker than they have provided so far this season. Suarez is 3-35 on the year with 12 strikeouts and just two RBI after driving in over 100 in each of the past two seasons. The left-handed batting Winker has been in the Designated Hitter spot against right-handed pitching this year. However, he is just 2-23 at the plate with nine strikeouts and just one RBI. These two combined for 65 Home Runs last season but have yet to put a ball out of the park in 2020.
Francisco Lindor blasted his third Home Run of the season in the 1st inning last night off of Sonny Gray. However, Lindor was one of the only bright spots at the plate collecting two of the five Indians hits. So far this season Cleveland has really struggled at the plate and currently are in second to last in all of Major League Baseball with a .190 team batting average. In the last six games the Indians have only managed to score six total runs. However, with Shane Bieber on the mound, they shouldn’t need much run support as they have shut out the opposing team in each of his two starts so far this season.