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Brewers 4, Reds 2: Cincinnati drops snooze-fest on getaway day

Three outta four ain't bad, though.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Marlon Byrd started his Cincinnati Reds tenure like a flat tire, hitting just .115 with no walks, no dingers, and 17 strikeouts to his name through the team's first 14 games.  He busted out of one of those rough patches today against Kyle Lohse and the Milwaukee Brewers, however, as he smashed his first dinger of the 2015 season.  No, he didn't take a walk yet, and yes, he struck out again, but on a day where the rest of the team's offense was either silent, sitting out on getaway day, or rubbing a sore hip while active instead of on the 15 day DL, that was the bulk of the heavy lifting done by Reds bats on the day.

Congrats, Marlon, and I hope it starts a surge.

Honorable Mentions are due to:  Homer Bailey, who battled through not having his best stuff to hold the Brewers to just 2 ER in his 2nd start of 2015; and Billy Hamilton, who went 1 for 3 with a walk.

Key Plays

  • Adam Lind got the scoring started with a solo dinger off Bailey in the Bottom of the 2nd, a moonball that landed in the bullpen just beyond the fence in left-center.  Reds trailed, 1-0.
  • Byrd got off the schneid in the Top of the 5th, finally, as he followed a single by Brandon Phillips with his first dinger as a member of the Reds.  Byrd's blast seemingly stayed in the air forever, and it easily cleared the wall in right-center for a 2-run blast.  Reds led, 2-1.
  • That lead lasted a grand total of never, however, as Bailey served up a meatball on the inside of the plate to Aramis Ramirez to lead off the Bottom of the 5th, and he destroyed it for his first dinger of the season.  Game tied, 2-2.
  • After Kevin Gregg got Bailey out of a jam by getting the final out of the Bottom of the 6th, Bryan Price opted to run the beleaguered reliever back out for the Bottom of the 7th.  Gregg promptly walked the leadoff hitter, and that haunted when Jean Segura later singled to drive him in.  Reds trailed, 3-2.
  • The Reds coughed up another run in the Bottom of the 8th with Manny Parra on the mound.  Ryan Braun singled to lead off the inning, he later moved to 2B on a 2-out single from PH Jason Rogers, and the bench hit the fan when Braun broke to try to steal 3B.  Despite a great jump, Tucker Barnhart threw down to Kris Negron, who was either late getting to the base or took a really awkward route that left him in front of the bag.  It looked like Negron caught the ball initially, but it squirted away when he reached back to make the tag.  The ball rolled down the LF line, and Braun motored home.  Oof.  Reds trailed, 4-2.
  • Zack Cozart smacked a 2-out double to bring Joey Votto to the plate in the Bottom of the 9th as the tying run, but Votto grounded out to wrap things up and end his streak of consecutive games on-base.  Reds lose, 4-2.
Tony Graphanino

Source: FanGraphs

Other Notes

  • Hamilton was thrown out trying to steal 2B in the Top of the 6th, ending the team's perfect 17 for 17 start to the season.  Hamilton himself had been 9 for 9.
  • Phillips pulled off some master deekery in the Bottom of the 4th when he let a flare off the bat of Khris Davis drop in front of him and then turned a double play.  The umpires didn't signal for an infield fly, and Phillips alertly saw both the batter and the runner on 1B assuming it'd be caught, and made a hell of an instinctive play.
  • Homer's final line:  5.2 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 79 pitches.  His fastball topped out at 92 mph, and while that's still 2 mph lower than his average velocity from last year, that's not terribly concerning considering how much time he missed.
  • Here's an interesting note about the disappearing act that is Tony Cingrani.  The hell are the Reds doing with their bullpen?
  • Remember Drew Stubbs?  He's 0 for 1 with a K so far for the Colorado Rockies today in their game against the San Diego Padres, bringing his season line to .000/.000/.000.  He's 0 for 16 with 10 Ks.  Yeesh.
  • That was a classic getaway day loss.  Skip Schumaker pinch hit in the Bottom of the 9th with the Reds down 2 and both Todd Frazier and - presumably - Devin Mesoraco available on the bench.  Whatever.
  • Remember that Drew Stubbs Other Note?  He walked in his 2nd PA today.  Good going, Drew.
  • The Reds will return home after this one to start a weekend series in GABP against the Chicago Cubs.  Mike Leake will take the hill for Cincinnati opposite Jon Lester tomorrow, with first pitch set for 7:10 PM EDT.
  • NSFW Tunes.  (Still Gregglin')