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Slump? What slump? Joey Votto leads the Reds to a 3-2 victory over the Dodgers

Joey Votto went two for two, with a home run, two RBI, two runs, and two walks.

Joe Robbins
The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Joey Votto looked great tonight, launching an opposite field home run, collecting a single, and walking twice. The home run came with two outs and the Reds trailing, so the timing couldn't have been better. Mike Leake deserves an honorable mention for his strong outing. He allowed two runs in 7⅔ innings while striking out five and walking none. The blemish came on a two-run shot by Hanley Ramirez that landed somewhere on Columbia Parkway. Ramirez deserves an honorable mention for that monster alone. Brian Wilson entered the game in a bases loaded, no out situation in the bottom of the eighth. A base hit would have blown the game open for the Reds, but Wilson made a great catch on a liner, doubled off the runner at third, and then struck out Todd Frazier to end the inning without a run scoring. Finally, Aroldis Chapman faced the heart of the Dodgers' lineup -- Yasiel Puig, Adrian Gonzalez, and Hanley Ramirez -- with a one run cushion and struck them out in order. It was the first time that Chapman has pitched on four consecutive days, but you wouldn't have known it from watching him.

Key Plays

  • Hanley Ramirez ripped a home run to the upper deck in left field with Yasiel Puig on first base and two outs. Dodgers led, 2-0.
  • Joey Votto and Jay Bruce led off the bottom of the fourth with back-to-back singles. Ryan Ludwick hit into a groundball double play, but Votto was able to score from third. Todd Frazier and Zack Cozart then strung together a couple of singles to revive the rally. However, the Reds couldn't make anything out of the opportunity as Devin Mesoraco grounded out to end the inning. Dodgers led, 2-1.
  • Mike Leake walked to lead off the bottom of the fifth. Shin-Soo knocked a singled up the middle to start what looked like a potential rally. Unfortunately, Brandon Phillips grounded into a double play. It looked as if the Reds might squander another scoring situation, but Joey Votto hit a circuit clout to left field to give the Reds a 3-2 lead.
  • In the top of the eighth, Skip Schumaker hit a grounder to the right side that Leake snagged and flipped to a barehanded Votto for a dandy of a play. Michael Young then hit the classiest Texas Leaguer I've ever seen to knock Leake out of the game. Manny Parra came in for Cincinnati and retired Carl Crawford on a grounder to end the inning. Reds led, 3-2.
  • In the bottom of the eighth, Phillips led off with a single. Billy Hamilton came in to run for Phillips, stealing second base before Votto walked. Bruce then walked to load the bases with no one out. The Dodgers brought in Brian Wilson to face Ludwick, who lined into a double play, pitcher to third base. Wilson then struck out Frazier to end the threat. Reds led, 3-2.
  • Aroldis Chapman struck out Puig, Adrian Gonzalez, and Ramirez in order to seal the game. Reds won, 3-2.
Fangraphs' Win Probability Graph

Source: FanGraphs
Other Notes

  • The Cardinals currently lead the Pirates in St. Louis, 5-1.
  • This was the Reds' 80th win of the season. The Reds trail the Pirates by two and a half games and the Cardinals by one game, but both of those numbers will change by the end of the night.
  • The Reds play the Dodgers tomorrow at 1:05 EDT in what should be a fantastic pitching matchup. Zack Greinke will start for Los Angeles, and Mat Latos will take the mound for the Reds.
  • This song seems appropriate with the Dodgers in town.