Friday, June 2, 2023
Sports Gaming Monitor

MLB Preview: St. Louis Cardinals (21-27) at Cincinnati Reds (19-27)


LOSS OF A LEGEND & FRIEND: The Cardinals and all of baseball were saddened to learn today of the passing of Hall of Fame writer and friend Rick Hummel at the age of 77. Hummel, nicknamed the “Commish”, covered the Cardinals for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch for 50 years before retiring after the 2022 season. The Busch Stadium Press Box is named after both Rick and Hall of Fame writer Bob Broeg who also covered the Cardinals for the Post-Dispatch. Rick was voted the recipient of the BBWAA J.G. Taylor Spink Award in 2007.

RECENT REDBIRDS: The St. Louis Cardinals open a 7-game tour of the Buckeye State tonight with the opening game of a 4-game series against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park…the roadtrip will continue this coming weekend with a 3-game set against the Cleveland Guardians…the Cardinals wrapped up a 7-game homestand (2-1 vs. MIL, 3-1 vs. LAD) yesterday with a 10-5 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers…this week’s series with the Reds marks the first meeting of the season between the two clubs…it’s the latest in the season the two NL Central rivals have met for the first time since a June 18 initial meeting in 2004.

ROAD TRIPPING REDBIRDS: Beginning tonight, St. Louis is scheduled to play 13 of its next 15 games on the road (May 22-June 7)…their only two home games over that time span are with cross-state rival Kansas City on Memorial Day, May 29, and Tuesday, May 30.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: After losing a franchise record 11 consecutive opening games of series to begin the season, the Cardinals have now won the series opener in 4-straight series, and have gone 4-0 in those series (at CHI, at BOS, vs. MIL, vs. LAD).

GORMAN NAMED N.L. PLAYER OF WEEK: Cardinals infielder Nolan Gorman was named today as the National League Player of the Week for the week ending May 21. The award is the first of his career and the 1st for a Cardinals player in 2023. Gorman batted .458 for the week with 4 HR & 11 RBI (1.519 OPS)

FLIGHT PATTERN: Winners of 11 of their last 14 games (May 7-present), the Cardinals enter today tied with Chicago Cubs for 3rd place in the NL Central, 5.0 games behind first place Milwaukee… St. Louis is within 5.0 games of the division lead for the first time since April 17 (gaining 5.0 games in the division since May 7) … The Cardinals were in last place for 24 straight days (April 25-May 20) … Tonight’s game is the 11th game of a season-high 19 consecutive without an off-day (8-2 record).

REDBIRD RESURGENCE: Since May 7, the Cardinals lead MLB in win pct. (.786, 11-3), runs scored (101), runs per game (7.2), slugging (.510), OPS (.859), RBI (97), tied for the MLB lead in wins (11) and rank 2nd in stolen bases (17), homers (29) and total bases (247).

BURGER PHONE HOTLINE: The Cardinals are 5th in MLB in home runs (67) this season while ranking 3rd in the month of May (35) to the Yankees (39) and Braves (36) … The Redbirds sport a 18-13 record in games when they go yard this season, but are 3-14 in homerless games.

REDBIRD RIBEYES: The Cardinals had six players enjoy 4+ RBI games last week, as Andrew Knizner (4), Nolan Gorman (5), Nolan Arenado (4), Willson Contreras (6), Paul DeJong (4) and Óscar Mercado (5) all had games with 4 or more RBI in the past week.

BOTTOMS UP: The Cardinals 9th place hitters are leading the NL in HR (8), and OPS (.824) and rank 2nd in RBI (24), one behind Colorado (25) … the Cardinals .663 OPS out of the 9th spot last season was their highest in the modern era as MLB went to full-time DH.

AND THE ÓSCAR GOES TO…: Playing in just his 5th game since joining the Cardinals roster from Memphis (AAA) last Wed.,Óscar Mercado enjoyed a career day in yesterday’s win, going 3-for-4 and matching his career-best with 5 RBI, including 4 with two-outs against Clayton Kershaw…Mercado became just the 4th Cardinal to collect 5 RBI out of the 9th spot in the lineup, joining Chris Carpenter (6 RBI), Bob Gibson & John Mabry.

GOING STREAKING WITH THE NOLANS: Nolan Arenado (12 games, .408; 20-49) and Nolan Gorman (11 games, .432; 16-37) are both riding 11+ game hitting streaks, ranking in the top 5 in longest active streaks in MLB … Gorman’s 11-gamer is a career best while Arenado’s hit streak is his longest since joining the Cardinals (2021-present). Arenado also has an active 6-game road hitting streak

NL Leaders: Losses (6, T-2nd); Hits (56, T-6th)

  • Is set to make his 10th start of the season and his 118th career (21st as a member of the Cardinals).
  • Is trying to snap a career-high six-game losing streak, although the Cardinals have been shut out in three of his six losses while he has had three quality starts among his five defeats.
  • Allowed just two home runs in his first seven starts and back-to-back games with two home runs each at CHI (5/10) and vs. MIL (5/16).
  • Received three runs of support or less in each of his last seven starts.
  • Prior to his 5/10 start at Wrigley, he’d allowed just one earned run in three road games this season, fanning 22 in 19.2 IP. In six career road starts with St. Louis, he’s allowed zero earned runs in three of those games.
  • Recorded his first and only GIDP of the season in his 5/10 start at CHI.
  • Is 8-9 with a 3.60 ERA in 20 starts as a member of the Cardinals and St. Louis has won 10 of his 20 starts.
  • Leads all Cardinals pitchers with 102 strikeouts since being acquired at the 2022 Trade Deadline (8/2/22).
  • Has not walked a left-handed batter since being acquired by the Cardinals (72 total batters faced). Is the only pitcher in MLB who has faced 60+ left-handed batters without a walk to a LHB since 8/1/22.
  • Made his fourth Opening Day roster and first with the Cardinals, adding to 2018, 2021 and 2022 with the Yankees. Was on the Injured List in 2019 and Taxi Squad in 2020.
  • Has held his opposition to three earned runs or fewer in 79% (92-of-117) of his career starts.


  • Lost his 6th straight decision, extending his career-long, in a 3-2 loss to Milwaukee at Busch Stadium. Received three runs of support or less in his 7th straight start. Allowed two home runs (B. Anderson; J. Wiemer) for the second straight start.

5/16 MIL L 3-2 L-6 5.1 8 3 3 1 7 2 98-64

  • Has lost six straight decisions, surpassing his career-long of four prior to 2023. Last win came on 4/8 at MIL, tossing 7.0 scoreless innings of three-hit ball in a 6-0 win. Cardinals have lost his last seven starts.
  • Took his first no-decision of the season as the Cardinals fell, 5-4, to the Detroit Tigers on 5/5. It was his team-leading 5th quality start, and 3rd-straight.
  • Locked horns with Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers on 4/29 at Dodger Stadium… allowed just one run across 6.2 IP, but was handed his 4th-straight loss (1-0).
  • Threw a season-high 107 pitches and limited the SF Giants to just one unearned run over his 6.0 IP on 4/24, but took the loss as Alex Cobb blanked the Cardinals, 4-0. It was just the 2nd road loss for Monty as a member of the Cardinals.
  • Established a new career-high with a 15.0 inning scoreless streak from 4/2-13, surpassing his previous high of 14.2 IP.
  • Won his opening start of the season behind a 9-4 offensive effort vs. TOR (4/2) in a series clinching win.
  • Threw 7.0 scoreless innings of three-hit ball at MIL (4/8). Was the longest outing by a Cardinals pitcher this season and his 2nd consecutive scoreless outing against an N.L. Central opponent on the road (16.0 IP streak).
  • Tied his career-highs in both hits (10) and runs (7) allowed as the Cardinals lost 8-7 vs. ARI (4/18) in a game they rallied from down 7-2 in the 4th inning.



  • The Reds and Cardinals will observe a moment of silence in memory of legendary broadcaster Mike Shannon and Hall of Fame writer Rick Hummel, each a beloved and iconic member of the Cardinals and Major League Baseball families.
  • During pregame ceremonies, the Reds will honor Ashley Brophy, our Reds Way All-Star for the month of May…Ashley is a zone captain in ballpark operations.
  • Class AA Chattanooga IF Noelvi Marte has been named Southern League Player of the Week (5/15-5/21)…is his second weekly award (5/1-5/7)…
    last week he recorded 3 multi-hit games and collected 5 extra-base hits… for the season ranks fourth in the league in hitting (.292), T2nd in HR (8), T1st in hits (42) and T4th in runs scored (26).


  • Is Game 1 of a 4-game series vs Rick Hummel’s Cardinals and Game 4 (0-3) of a 7-game homestand that included a 3-game series sweep loss to the Yankees.
  • Following this series, the Reds hit the road again for 3-game series in the two oldest ballparks in the Major Leagues, Chc’s Wrigley Field (1914) and Bos’ Fenway Park (1912).


  • The Reds and Cardinals are meeting for the first time this season.
  • In 2022, the Cardinals won 12 of the 19 games and 5 of the 6 series.
  • From 7/15-7/24 and surrounding the 2022 All-Star break, the Reds and Cardinals played 5 straight games for the first time since 9/7-9/11, 1962.
  • From 9/15-9/18, 2022 at Busch Stadium, the Reds and Cardinals faced off in a 5-game series (3-2 Cardinals series win) for the first time since 7/25-7/27, 1958 (3-2 Reds series win).
  • The Cardinals’ .506 winning percentage at Great American Ball Park (85-83) is the highest among NL Central Division opponents and seventh-highest of any National League team.


  • The Reds in 2022 went 8-11 vs Cubs, including 5-4 at Great American Ball Park, 3-6 at Wrigley Field and a 4-2 “home” loss on 8/11 in the Field of Dreams game in Dyersville, Iowa.
  • Since a 4-1 Reds win on 6/25/14 and beginning 9/15/14, the Cubs have won 30 of the last 42 night games vs the Reds at The Friendly Confines.
  • The teams met in the final 6 games of the 2022 championship season (3g at Wrigley Field, 3g at Great American Ball Park), the longest continuous stretch of games between the Reds and Cubs since they played 7 straight games from 8/29-9/5, 1931…@EliasSports.
  • The game scheduled for 4/5 at Great American Ball Park was postponed by threatening weather…it has been rescheduled as part of a day/night
    doubleheader on Fri, 9/1 (1:10, 6:40).


  • The Red Sox lead the all-time series, 14-3, including a split of the home-and-home 2-game series last season.
  • The Sox won 5 of the 7 series, tied the other 2 series and swept 4 series.
  • The Reds’ 2-1 win on 5/31/22 was their first victory at Fenway Park since Game 7 of the 1975 World Series.
  • In the June 2005 series at Fenway, the Reds were outscored by the Sox, 23-4, and hit .167 (15-90, 32k) while posting an 8.25 era (.340ba)…gametime temperature on 6/13/05 was 91 humid degrees, dropped to a chilly 54 for Game 2 and then plummeted to a frigid 49 for the series finale.
  • The Red Sox won 8 of 10 games at Great American Ball Park, including an 8-game winning streak (6/14/08-9/20/22), the best winning percentage
    of any opposing team (.800).
  • Before the interleague schedule expanded this season to include games vs all 15 American League teams, from 1997- 2022 the Redlegs went 188-247 vs the American League, at .432 the lowest interleague winning percentage of any Major League team…in 2022 the Reds went 12-8 vs AL teams (0-2 vs Cle, 2-0 at Cle, 1-2 at Tor, 1-1 at Bos, 3-0 vs TB, 2-1 at NYY, 2-1 vs Bal, 1-1 vs Bos)…last season’s was their first winning record vs the American League since 2013 (11-9)…in the 8 seasons between the 2013 & 2022 season series wins, the Reds went 61-99 vs AL teams (.381).

Tonight’s Pitcher – #55 Brandon Williamson, LHP

  • Tonight is making his second Major League appearance.
  • Tue at Col, became only the 10th visiting pitcher to make his Major League debut with a start at Coors Field, the first since Hou’s José Urquidy on 7/2/19.
  • Became only the fourth Reds pitcher to make his Major League debut with at least 5.2 innings, 2 hits or fewer allowed and at least 6 strikeouts, joining Tom Carroll (7/7/1974 vs StL, 7ip, 2h, 6k), Mo Sanford (8/9/1991 at SD, 7ip, 2h, 8k) and Johnny Cueto (4/3/2008 vs Ari, 7ip, 1h, 10k).
  • Became only the fourth Reds pitcher in the expansion era (since 1961) to retire at least 14 consecutive batters in his Major League debut, joining Wayne Simpson (16, 4/9/1970 at LAD), Rob Bell (16, 4/8/2000 vs Cubs) and Johnny Cueto (15, 4/3/2008 vs Ari).
  • In Tue’s 3-1 win, allowed a single to Charlie Blackmon, his first career batter faced, but didn’t allow another hit until Ezequiel Tovar’s solo HR in the sixth inning snapped the scoreless tie…Williamson retired 14 consecutive batters leading up to Tovar’s home run.
  • Turned 25 years old on the fourth day of the season.
  • Entered the season rated by Baseball America the 10th-best prospect in the organization.
  • Began the season at Class AAA Louisville (8gs, 2-4, 6.62, 34ip, 44h, 20bb, 27k, 7hr, 1.88whip, .310baa).
  • Was selected by the Mariners in the second round (59th overall) of the 2019 first-year player draft.
  • Was an Mariners Organization All-Star in 2019 and 2021.
  • On 3/14/22 was acquired from the Mariners, along with RHP Justin Dunn, OF Jake Fraley and a player to be named, for 3B Eugenio Suárez and OF Jesse Winker.
  • On 3/29/22 the Reds completed the trade by acquiring minor league RHP Connor Phillips as the player to be named.
  • When acquired by the Reds in March 2022, his curveball was rated by Baseball America the best in the Mariners’ organization.
Mikey Balhan Sports

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