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The Return of the Offense: Reds beat Pirates, 11-2.

Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Stars of the Game

I can't decide between Jonny Gomes and Ramon Hernandez.  In 5 plate appearances, Gomes struck out twice, walked once and hit two HRs.  Ramon went 3 for 4 with a walk, but in particular he broke this one open with a grand slam in the fifth.  Honorable mentions also go to Joey Votto (3 for 4 with a triple and a stolen base), Drew Stubbs (2 for 4 with a walk and a HR), and Mike Leake, who got into a jam in the fourth but salvaged a solid 6 inning start, allowing 2 ER.


Some Key Plays

It's hard to narrow this down, since the Reds managed 15 hits, including 4 HRs, two doubles, and a triple.  Every starter (including Mike Leake) had a hit . . . except Miguel Cairo.  So yeah: it wasn't gone for long, but the offense definitely returned for this one.

Leake looked like he might fall apart in the fourth inning after two walks and a single loaded the bases with one out.  He walked in a run and allowed a sac fly, but recovered to get a strikeout to end the inning.  He pitched two more quick innings before handing it over to the bullpen, which didn't allow a run in three innings.

It's a little hard to remember, but this one was close until the fifth inning, when the Reds scored 7 runs to break a 2-2 tie.  That rally started off with an error that allowed Cairo to reach.  Votto singled and stole second, then Bruce was intentionally walked after Gomes struck out.  Francisco singled to score one, then Ramon cleared the bases.  After a Paul Janish flyout, Leake singled and Stubbs scored him with a HR that bounced off of the top of the outfield wall.

Votto tripled in the sixth and scored on Gomes's second HR of the game to bring the score to 11-2, which was sufficient to win this one.