A good number of Cincinnati Reds fans were off of the Bryan Price train before the 2018 season began. If you have ever been on social media, or sports talk radio, or in public in the Cincinnati area, that much was clear this winter.
Those who were remaining entering the year as jumping off left-and-right. Last night in Philadelphia seemed like it was the last straw for the holdovers. Homer Bailey took a no-hitter into the 6th inning before a 1-out single ended his bid for a third one in his career. Before the inning was over the Phillies would tie the game up at 1-1.
It was that 7th inning where things began to go awry for Bryan Price. He went to Jared Hughes to begin the inning. Left handed hitter Nick Williams led off the inning with a double. Right hander Scott Kingery would strikeout, but the Phillies then brought on switch hitter Andrew Knapp to hit left handed against Hughes. He would ground out. Then another lefty stepped to the plate for Philadelphia and JP Crawford came through with a go-ahead RBI single. You can make the argument that if Price went with one of his lefties for the inning that youíd still have to face right handers Scott Kingery and either Jorge Alfaro (who was pinch hit for), or another pinch hitter that would have been right handed during the inning.
The Reds didnít score in the top of the 8th inning. That meant the team was heading into the bottom of the 8th inning, with the top of the lineup for the Phillies due up, in a 1-run game. Unless Raisel Iglesias wasnít available for some reason we donít know about Ė heís pitched just one time in the last week, this was the perfect time to bring him into the game. The option that Bryan Price chose, instead, was a pitcher who had never thrown a Major League pitch.
Tanner Rainey entered the game and made his Major League debut, in a tight game. Now, Rainey has outstanding stuff. No one is doubting that. But, as I wrote on Tuesday afternoon, with his history of inconsistency with the strikezone, it would probably be beneficial to find an ideal spot for him to come into the game when a walk might now be the game. The right hander has thrown, well, now, 18 total innings above A-ball. One of them was Tuesday night. Things didnít go well for Rainey. Before you knew it, he had just given up a grand slam and the Phillies were ahead 6-1 and the Reds were 2-8 on the season.
Itís been confusing decision after confusing decision by Bryan Price this year. And many in the past, too, but this season heís made ones that are just too confusing to understand. Yovani Gallardo was released before the game. This is the same guy that in the last week was pitching in close games for the Reds, while Amir Garrett and his 98 MPH fastball from the left side was out there, essentially, pitching mop up duty and then unavailable in close games to face lefties.
Bryan Price is on the hottest of seats | redsminorleagues.com