The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
When being interviewed recently about the birth of his first child, Todd Frazier mentioned that it would change not just the way he lives, but also the way he plays.
"It changes a lot. If I don't hit 50 homers, there's going to be a problem," said Frazier, getting laughs. "I've got that Daddy strength."
Well, Frazier certainly put that newfound Daddy strength on display today as he smoked a pair of homers to earn the JNMHSotG. Frazier's first blast was a moonball to the upper portion of the upper deck bleachers in LF (that was measured at 474 feet), and his second came in the Bottom of the 7th with a pair of runners on (and it drew the Reds within one run of the lead). Frazier is being asked to play a major role in as a RH power hitter in the middle of the order this year, and the early returns are giving Reds fans hope that he can carry the load.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Joey Votto, who went 3 for 4 with a double, walk, and two runs scored; Jay Bruce, who 2 for 4 with a homer, walk, and a pair of RBI; and Nick Christiani & Curtis Partch, who combined to throw 3.2 IP of scoreless ball out of the bullpen.
- After a rain delay wasted much of the afternoon, the Reds wasted little time in getting on the board against Cardinals SP Lance Lynn. After Lynn struck out Billy Hamilton and Brandon Phillips to open the Bottom of the 1st, Votto fought off several two-strike pitches before lacing an opposite field double down the RF line. Bruce then followed by clubbing the team's first dinger of the season about two-thirds of the way up the RF bleachers. Frazier followed by destroying a Lynn fastball into the cheap seats. Reds led, 3-0.
- Homer Bailey, who had breezed through a 1-2-3 Top of the 1st, ran into some difficulty often thereafter, beginning with the Top of the 2nd. Matt Adams hit a two-out single, and Jhonny Peralta fhollowed whith a lhine-dhrive hHR to LF. Reds led, 3-2.
- Adams led off the Top of the 4th with a double to left-center, and John Jay followed two batters later with a double of his own to drive in Adams. Jay was thrown out stealing 3B by a great throw from Tucker Barnhart, but Bailey ran into more trouble in the Top of the 5th. Kolten Wong drew a one-out walk, and Matt Holliday doubled to score him and effectively end Bailey's day (he walked the next batter and was then pulled). Reds trailed, 4-3.
- Trevor Bell had a rather forgettable season debut today, struggling to find any part of the plate when asked to come in for the Top of the 7th. Back to back walks started the inning, and a long Holliday single (and miraculous near-catch in the OF) loaded the bags and brought Logan Ondrusek in to clean things up. Allen Craig then hit a sharp liner off Votto's glove to score Matt Carpenter, and a soft Yadier Molina single scored Wong. Ondrusek induced a pair of shallow pop ups, but then threw a 53 ft fastball that short-hopped off Barnhart's shoulder for a wild pitch to score Holliday. Reds trailed, 7-3.
- LHP Kevin Siegrist came in to pitch the Bottom of the 7th, and he allowed a one-out walk to Votto and a single to Bruce before being pulled. Pat Neshek came in to throw some sidearm junk to Frazier, but he promptly launched an opposite field GABP special to cut the lead to one. Unfortunately for the Reds, that was the last offense they could muster. Reds lose, 7-6.
- Billy Hamilton got on base! The Reds' leadoff hitter - who had opened the season by failing to get on base for 12 straight PAs - walked off Neshek with two-outs in the Bottom of the 8th. Seal's broken!
- The Reds and Cards each had 19 hits and 11 walks in the series, but despite the Cardinals out-erroring the Reds 5-1, they walked away with a 2-1 series victory. That's a bummer.
- Homer Bailey had a rather poor start despite flashing great velocity. His final line: 4.1 IP, 7 H, 3 BB, 3 K, 4 ER on 93 pitches.