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The Reds Report: June 25

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Reds were able to win a couple of games this week, but overall the team continued to struggle. Cincinnati dropped two of three to Tampa Bay to open the week. Over the weekend, the National also took two out of three from the Reds. Cincinnati remains in last place in the NL Central, and they’re eight games back of the first-place Brewers.

Luis Castillo Makes His Debut

Castillo made his major league debut on Friday in a start against the Nationals. The 24-year-old pitched fairly well. He gave up 2 ER in five innings of work. The fact that he walked five batters isn’t ideal, but it was a solid start for Castillo who could be a major player in Cincinnati’s rotation in the near future. The Reds acquired Castillo in January in the trade that sent Dan Straily to Miami.

Doug Gray of RedsMinorLeagues.com had a complete breakdown of Castillo’s performance.

Homer Bailey Struggles in Return

Homer Bailey made his much-anticipated return to the starting rotation on Saturday. Unfortunately, he didn’t provide the type of performance fans were expecting. Bailey gave up eight runs in just 1.2 innings. What made this start even more disappointing was the fact that Bailey had pitched well in his rehab starts in the minors. You can read Mark Sheldon’s assessment of Bailey’s night here.

You can hear Bailey talk about his struggles below.

Brandon Finnegan Set to Return

The Reds got another piece of good news on the pitching front this week. Kyle Melnick of MLB.com reports that Brandon Finnegan is slated to take the mound for the Reds on Monday against the Cardinals. It will be his first start since April 15.

As Melnick notes, the Reds rotation is in a better position than it has been in for several months. The return of Bailey and Finnegan along with the promotion of Castillo gives the team three of their better options at the position. Cincinnati’s starting rotation currently has the worst ERA in baseball (5.27). The unit can use all the help that it can get. Thankfully, it seems like help is on the way.

Joey Votto in the Home Run Derby?

Votto has seemingly done it all in his big league career, but one thing the Reds first baseman is yet to do is participate in the Home Run Derby. According to David Adler of MLB.com, Votto hasn’t been asked to participate yet, but he would agree to do so if given the opportunity. As of Sunday afternoon, Votto was tied for the NL lead in home runs with 20. Reds teammate Scott Schebler also has 20 HR.

What’s Ahead

On Monday, the Reds head to St. Louis for a makeup game from April 29. They’ll host the Brewers at home starting Tuesday followed by a series with the Cubs.

You can read Eric’s writing all season long at The Sporting NewsRed Reporter, and Baseball Prospectus. He also hosts the On Baseball Writing Podcast and appears on the Red Reporter podcast.

Article written by Eric Roseberry

Eric covers the Reds for KSR and Red Reporter. He writes about fantasy baseball for Baseball Prospectus. You can follow Eric on Twitter @ericroseberry.