The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
There's a three way tie for the honoree tonight. That's all well and good, of course, since the Reds won, and each of them had major impacts and played the roles of momentum-turners. First, Todd Frazier went 2 for 3 with a double and a tie-breaking HR in the 8th immediately after Bailey/Marshall had surrendered the tying runs. That was vintage Todd Frazier which, of course, is vintage. After the Phillies came back to tie things up, again, in the bottom of the 8th off of Broxton/Phillips, Zack Cozart picked them up with a lead off solo-honker off of grade A not-fun guy Johnathan Papelbon, capping his 2 for 4, 2 RBI night. Awesome.
Wrapping up the honorees, of course, is Aroldis Chapman, who came into his 4th game in 5 days to close out the Phillies. His last pitch of the night, which struck out Chase Utley (while not hitting him OR getting called for hitting him) was clocked at 102 mph. Considering the Reds' bullpen had already blown 2 saves before then, Chappy gets a nod.
The supergrover Memorial Honorary Red Reporter of the Gamethread
Sometimes, it's quality that wins awards, while other times, it's quantity. Tonight, it was seniority, which makes me happy to note that RR commenter emeritus 'tHan was in the house tonight, and there's no coincidence that the Reds began to rough up Cliff Lee shortly after he stopped in. If you happen to see ol' 'tHan around these days, do me a favor and smack him on the back, say hello, make sure his boat shoes are tied so he doesn't trip and his hawaiian shirt is deliberately unbuttoned, and cheers his boat drink. He deserves it.
- All of them. No, really...this game was as tightly contested and back and forth as any game the Reds have played in quite awhile. (The "wind" game at Wrigley doesn't count, of course, because that was the Cubs, and they, of course, don't count.)
- Things did get off to an acrimonious start, however, as Jimmy Rollins led off the bottom of the 1st with a grounder that BP just booted. Chase Utley singled behind him, and Rollins later scored on a Ryan Howard single off of the RF wall. Reds trailed, 1-0.
- The score remained the same until the 7th as Homer Bailey and Cliff Lee both effectively shut down the opposing team's offenses. The Reds, however, finally got to Lee in the top of the 7th to claim the lead for the first time. Former Phillie great Scott Rolen led off with a double, and Frazier walked before Ryan Hanigan fought off Dusty's desire for him to bunt and Lee's pitches to slap a 2-strike single into CF, scoring Rolen when Juan Pierre couldn't throw the ball 4 feet. One batter later, Cozart hit a sac fly to score Frazier, and Drew Stubbs followed with a single to score Hanigan. Reds led, 3-1.
- That lead was shortlived, however, as the Phillies struck back immediately in the bottom of the 7th with 2 runs of their own. Frandsen and Kratz singled and doubled (google that...it's a law firm somewhere, I swear), and after Ty Wigginton walked, Jimmy Rollins doubled in 2 runs. Game tied, 3-3.
- In the 8th, Todd Frazier happened again, and hopefully ESPN's 1940's era RADAR system actually picked up on it as news. Reds lead, 4-3.
- Hold the phone! No, not Grahamophone, the proverbial 1950s phone! Hold it...because the Phillies in the 8th reached on Brown's "single" to BP, and then scored on Frandsen's triple. Game tied, again, 4-4.
- Fortunately, the Cozart. Zack smushed Papelbon's snookie all the way back to the South Jersey Shore to give the Reds a 5-4 lead. Aroldis Chapman thinks runs are silly. Against him, they are. So he said so. Reds win, 5-4!
- Tonight was just the Reds' 5th win in their last 20 games in Philly. With 90s night tomorrow night and Vance Worley on the mound, let's hope the Reds can make it two in a row behind Bronson Arroyo.
- Resident RR smart guy, talented writer, and East Coast Bureau Chief ken will be at the game tomorrow. Use the comment thread to give him all sorts of bad ideas to do or not do at the game tomorrow night! He mentioned he was going to wear Hammer pants for the 90s theme...pics or it didn't happen, ken.
- thevole has come back around, as has 'tHan (at least for an iPad cameo). That makes me want to hear from Man Mountain. What's that, you say? He's in a band that makes sick tunes? Well then, let's listen.
- Last, but not least, I give a salute to Chase Utley and his faux-dodging getting-hit-by-baseballs-not-skills. Nothing from nothing leaves nothing, Chase. You gotta have something, if you wanna make the playoffs.