Score first, then hit the brakes...they'll fly right by. Reds beat Cubs, 9-4.

Apr 20, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Theo Epstein, long the admirer of Moneyball tactics, truly will do anything to get the Cubs additional baserunners.

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Since we here at the Red Reporter Rambunctious Recap wRiting Roundtable like to spread the wealth, Devin Mesoraco gets the nod today. The Golem reached base in each of his first 4 plate appearances, going 2 for 3 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored. Mez's great day at the plate brought him up to a .368/.455/.421 line on the season...and the young shall lead us.

Very, very honorable mention to Drew Stubbs, who continues to rake since being bumped up to the 2nd spot in the lineup. Stubbs went 3 for 5 for the second night in the row, with a double, run scored, 3 RBI, 2 SB, and no strikeouts. Homer Bailey also performed well despite the defense falling apart around him, yielding just 1 earned run and no walks over 7 solid innings. Jay Bruce was 2 for 5, Joey Votto was 1 for 4 with a BB, Zack Cozart returned to his on-base-getting ways, Todd Frazier-Madville had a pinch hit triple, and jch's buddy Willie Harris even got in on the action. An all around solid effort by the boys today.

Key Plays

  • The Reds wasted no time in feasting on the 3-10 Cubs, as they busted through the door in the first inning of the 3 game series. Drew Stubbs singled, stole second, and advanced to third on a Starlin Castrlol. Joey Votto followed with a single, as did Jay Bruce, Scott Rolen walked, Chris Heisey singled, Willie Harris had an RBI groundout, Devin Mesoraco walked, and Homer Bailey struck out. That, folks, is what the Reds are supposed to do when facing Chris Volstad and the Cubs. Reds lead, 4-0.
  • The wind was clearly an issue today, and that coupled with some lazy defense bit the Reds in the bottom of the 3rd. David DeJesus messed with Homer to the tune of a single, and on what should have been the third out of the inning, Chris Heisey misplayed a fly ball from Starlin Castro, dropping it to let in a run and allowing the inning to continue. Bryan LaHair followed with an RBI single, and the Reds lead had been halved.
  • Good teams waste no time in striking back, and the Reds did that today. Rookies Devin Mesoraco and Zack "MVP" Cozart singled, and Drew Stubbs thought both of them should score, so he doubled. Reds lead, 6-2.
  • While the Cubs scattered a few hits here and there, they never really mounted an effective rally, and each run they scored was matched by a Reds rebuttal. Darwin Barney had an RBI groundout in the 5th, but Homer Bailey's grounder scored Willie Harris in the top of the 6th; Alfonso Ribiero-Soriano had an RBI grounder in the bottom of the 6th, but Drew Stubbs singled in another run in the top of the 8th. Todd Frazier even got in on the action, picking up his first hit of the season on an RBI triple in the top of the 9th. Jose Arredondo was brought in to clean up the last half of the 9th, and he sat the Cubs down in order. Reds win, 9-4.
  • 20120420_reds_cubs_0_20120420171809_live_medium

    via www.fangraphs.com

Other Notes

  • Drew Stubbs had 3 more hits today, stretching his hit-streak to 6 games. His torrid last few games has brought his overall season line up to .264/.304/.340.
  • The Chicago Cubs have lost 6 straight games to fall to 3-11 on the season.
  • Aroldis Chapman came on to pitch the 8th inning, and retired all three batters without allowing a run. That lowers his ERA to...oohp, nope, it doesn't. It's still zero. #LetHimStart
  • Todd Frazier is slugging .600! #LetHimStartToo.
  • Mike Leake takes the mound opposite Paul "there should really be a second o in my name" Maholm tomorrow at 1:05pm.
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