The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Jay Bruce is not dead. He's getting better. I think he'll go for a walk around the bases.
The Cincinnati Reds RF had endured an 0 for 26 streak prior to stepping into the batter's box in the Bottom of the 8th today, and he promptly mashed a tie-breaking 2 run dinger to put the good guys ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers for good. All of a sudden, Jay's slugging .400 again, which is higher than Billy Hamilton, Brandon Phillips, and Ryan Ludwick. For all of that he earns today's JNMHSotG trophy, tank top, and celebratory fridge magnet. Congrats on the slump buster, Jayzer, and here's to hoping it's a sign of a new hot streak.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Mat Latos, who tossed another stellar game, allowing just 2 runs, 4 hits, and a walk over 8 IP; Devin Mesoraco, who kept Mesoraking with a 3 for 4 day; Todd Frazier, who was 2 for 4; and Brandon Phillips, who went 2 for 3 with a walk.
- The Reds jumped out to a quick start against Yovani Gallardo today thanks to a pair of 1-out singles from Frazier and Phillips in the Bottom of the 1st. The latter moved Frazier to 3B, and he scored when Bruce grounded to 2B and the Brewers couldn't turn a double play. Ryan Ludwick was then hit by a pitch to put runners at 1B and 2B, and Bruce scored on a single to RF from Mesoraco. Reds led, 2-0.
- The Reds thought they'd added another run in the Bottom of the 2nd when Ramon Santiago mashed one - yes, mashed one - deep to LF that dropped when Logan Schafer and a fan collided at the yellow line on top of the wall. Santiago raced around for what was initially ruled an inside-the-park dinger, but review later overturned that and ruled Santiago out thanks to the guy in RF reaching into the field of play and obstructing Schafer's attempt at a catch. Whatever.
- Latos had carried a no hitter into the Top of the 5th, but that ended when Aramis Ramirez singled to CF. The Brewers 3B attempted to stretch it into a double, but he was thrown out by Billy Hamilton. Milwaukee finally got a run on the board in the Top of the 6th, however, thanks to a leadoff triple by Schafer and a productive grounder that drove him in two batters later. Reds led, 2-1.
- Freakin' Rickie Weeks paired with Freakin' Schafer to tie the freakin' game in the Top of the 8th, as Schafer doubled with two outs and Weeks hit a pinch-hit single to score him. That tied things, but Bruce promptly untied them in the Bottom of the 8th with a dinger on an inside fastball that looked nearly impossible to turn on. BP had walked in front of him, so it was a 2-run dinger, and thanks to Jonathan Broxton's gumption in the Top of the 9th, that was more than enough to take home the W. Reds win, 4-2!
- Jay Bruce now has more RBIs than Jason Heyward and Hunter Pence despite having roughly 90 fewer AB than both of them.
- RBIs are a terrible stat to cite when referring to someone's performance.
- Ryan Ludwick is 2 for his last 23 at the plate.
- Joey Votto did not play today, and due to an early game, no early BP, Twitter, and a few jumpy reporters, half the Reds' universe thought he was getting traded today. That sparked a rash of rather inane, uninformed, and facepalm-inducing comments from the bottom rungs of the internet, which is always good fun for the part of your brain that likes knowing how miserable much of the Earth is. Votto is not being traded - nor could he be with his contract - and the guy was simply getting a day off because his leg is at about 40% health.
- Brayan Pena was also put on paternity leave before the game for the birth of a child (a girl, I believe). Congrats, NERTS! Tucker Barnhart was called up in his place.
- Two out of three from the 1st place Brewers is never a bad thing. The Reds will now welcome the Chicago Cubs and whomever the heck they have as starting pitchers these days, with the first game of the series set to begin tomorrow at 7:10 PM ET. Go!
- Title Tunes.