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Wood Chips, Axe Grinds. Reds 2, Cubs 1.

In a matchup familiar to those who followed the race for the Reds' 5th starter position in 2010 and 2011, Mike Leake got the better of Travis Wood, albeit ever so slightly.

The chip on his shoulder wasn't big enough.  #WoodPuns
The chip on his shoulder wasn't big enough. #WoodPuns
Mike McGinnis

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Michael Edward Howard James Bluefin Leake, Jr. was positively fantastic today, and his 8 inning, 3 hit performance gets the nod. Leake's only mistake was an elevated one over the plate that Nate Schierholtz launched into the jetstream, but he was otherwise dominant while not allowing another Cub to reach scoring position. Leake lowered his season ERA to a miniscule 2.76, and in the process moved his record to 6-3, which I tell you about not because it really means much, but because you'll begin to hear that tossed around as All-Star pitching rosters begin to take shape. With this Mike Leake, you absolutely will.

Honorable mentions are due to a few hitters who came up large in an otherwise nondescript offensive game. Shin-Soo Choo was on base twice, and his double allowed him to score when Brandon Phillips singled two batters later. Hat tips to both of them, along with one to Todd Frazier, who homered for the second consecutive game.

Frazier, after his woefully powerless May, is now on pace for 20 HR, almost 90 RBI, and has his season OBP at a right nice .344. All in all, that's a pretty stellar excuse of a "sophomore slump."

Key Plays

  • Nate Schierholtz has a last name longer than the Cubs offense's output on the day. He hit a solo HR off of Leake in the Bottom of the 2nd. That was it. Reds trailed, 1-0.
  • In the Top of the 6th, the Reds finally got to their former teammate, Travis Wood, when Choo doubled to right-center. That was fantastic from the game's perspective, but also from Choo's perspective, as he'd entered the day with a rather fugly .157/.322/.186 against LHP in 2013, with just 2...two...extra base hits in 88 PAs. Fortunately, Brandon Phillips didn't let it go to waste, and his line drive single to CF allowed Choo to score. Game tied, 1-1.
  • Wasting little time, Todd Frazier got a kick out of a low cutter from Wood, and led off the Top of the 7th with a no-doubter over the RF wall. Frazier is the current king of bad-swings-turned-good. Leake continued to sweep aside Cubs through 8, and Aroldis Chapman was filthy Aroldis in the 9th to close things out. Reds win, 2-1!

Pretty Blasé Yet Totally Effective FanGraph Section

<iframe src="" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" height="450" width = "450" style="border:1px solid black;"></iframe><br /><span style="font-size:9pt;">Source: <a href="">FanGraphs</a></span>

Other Notes

  • Today's win marked the 12th consecutive victory for the Reds over the Cubs in Wrigley Field, the longest in the history of the esteemed piece of chewing gum. The Reds will look to extend that streak tomorrow, when Mat Latos takes the hill opposite Jeff Samardzija at 2:20 PM.
  • Cesar Izturis did not reach base twice today. Be sure to inform jch24 that he was incorrect. Of course, we know the only reason he was incorrect is because there was no avatar bet on the line; had there been, Izturis would've reached twice. That's just how it goes.
  • Joey Votto went 0 for 4 and failed to reach base. Marty haz a sad.
  • When talking about the Reds beating the Cubs, it goes on and on.
  • Mas canciones!
  • Travis Wood went 7 innings and allowed just 2 ER and 4 hits while taking the loss. He's good, folks.