Sat, 15 Aug 2020

Reds, Tigers bringing gas to opener in Detroit

Field Level Media
31 Jul 2020, 13:40 GMT+10

Luis Castillo and Spencer Turnbull piled up strikeouts in their initial outings in Cincinnati last weekend. They'll be matched up this time when the Reds begin a three-game weekend series in Detroit on Friday.

Castillo gave up just one run and struck out 11 Tigers in six innings on Saturday. He walked just one in a dominating performance, but the Tigers rallied for a 6-4 victory.

Castillo notched strikes on 64 of 91 pitches, and his fastball reached 99 mph. He also effectively mixed in a slider and changeup.

"He really impressed me," Reds catcher Curt Casali said to MLB.com. "He hopped right back on the wagon. He did what an All-Star does. He controlled the zone, he threw a lot of strikes, he had his changeup going. I thought his slider was the best I've seen it in quite some time."

Castillo was scheduled to make his second start on Thursday against the Chicago Cubs. The game was postponed by rain, however.

After losing two of three to the Tigers, the Reds lost twice to the Cubs before responding with a 12-7 win Wednesday.

Former Tigers Nick Castellanos and Eugenio Suarez played big roles in the streak-busting victory. Castellanos hit a grand slam, while Suarez supplied two RBIs and two runs scored.

Suarez has two hits in 21 at-bats but reached base six times in the series against Chicago.

"That's what I try. I don't try to swing at a bad pitch," Suarez said to the Cincinnati Inquirer. "My swing is not right right now, and like I said, the barrel is not on the ball. But my mind, I see the ball very good. I see the ball so good. I don't want to swing at a bad pitch. I take my walks. That helps my team."

Turnbull gave up one run on three hits and struck out eight in five innings Sunday. The right-hander had some command issues -- he walked four -- but buckled down with runners on base.

"I think he's growing up as a pitcher," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He knows he's got great stuff. I don't know how to say it, but we all know he's a little nuts, you have to be as a baseball player. When he's out there he's quirky and all those good things. But it's fun to watch him with the stuff that he has. Now he's figuring out how to use his stuff."

The Tigers are in the midst of a nine-game homestand. They split a four-game series with the Kansas City Royals the past four nights, including a 5-3 loss Thursday.

One positive development was the power display by veteran designated hitter Miguel Cabrera. He slugged two solo homers Thursday, increasing his season total to three long balls.

"He's been hitting the ball right at people and all those things," Gardenhire said. "He's been working on it. He was out hitting off the curveball machine today. That got him to keep his hands back a little bit."

Second baseman Jonathan Schoop has also been on a power binge. He has homered in three consecutive games. Schoop hit 23 homers in 121 games with Minnesota last season.

--Field Level Media

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