The Noe Juxhall Henorial Monorary Gar of the Stame
We've given our fair share of questions, criticisms, insults, whys, hows, and what-the-hells towards the Cincinnati Reds front office for their decision to keep Devin Mesoraco on the 25-man roster and off the DL while his hip prevents him from playing. That's undeniable. What we haven't really touched on, however, is what Mes himself has to be going through mentally, as he's back to being relegated to a primary bench role with very few spots for him to make any impact at all. He DH'd quite functionally for two games against the Chicago White Sox over the weekend, and perhaps that gave him all the confidence he needed to step up large on Tuesday against the Atlanta Braves.
Mes smacked a game winning pinch hit double in the Bottom of the 9th, and his postgame interview let it be known that he's obviously as frustrated with his hip as we all are with the whole scenario. While the roster management has been unorthodox, big props are due to Mes for doing what he can, when he can, and tonight he provided the big hit the team has seemingly been aching for since the end of April.
Have a trophy, Mes. Just check to see if it's spelled correctly.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Brayan Pena, who had a spectacular night at the plate, going 3 for 4 with a double, a run scored, and the hit that led to the game's winning run; Michael Lorenzen, for being versatile enough as a pitcher to give the Reds a bit of leeway to carry 2 (now 3) injured regulars; Todd Frazier, who mashed a 2-run dinger to tie for the NL lead; and Anthony DeSclafani, who didn't have his best stuff on the evening but still managed to yield just 3 runs in 6 IP.
- The Bottom of the 1st saw Billy Hamilton reach base with his first successful bunt of the season. He promptly got thrown out trying to steal, though, and Joey Votto ultimately came to bat with his usual 2-out, nobody on scenario. He took a walk, however, and that proved vital as Frazier followed with his 2-run superboop. Reds led, 2-0.
- The Braves clawed back in the Top of the 3rd against DeSclafani, thanks to back to back singles from Andrelton Simmons and Freddie Freeman, a run scoring double from Kelly Johnson, and a sac fly from Alberto Callaspo. Game tied, 2-2.
- The Top of the 4th saw the Braves jump ahead after Jace Peterson smoked a leadoff double to the wall in RF and later scored on a similar double from Nick Markakis. Reds trailed, 3-2.
- Pena started the 7th inning boogaloo that managed to level score, singling to RF off a tiring Mike Foltynewicz. The Reds then bunted. The Reds then bunted again. The Reds then hit a sac fly, and that resulted in the game's tying run because every now and then small-ball is a justifiable decision. Game tied, 3-3.
- After Aroldis Chapman finally got back on track by retiring the side in his 3rd consecutive appearance in a tie game in the Top of the 9th, Pena again put the offense on his back by lacing a leadoff single off reliever Jason Grilli. Mes then stepped into the batter's box and promptly smoked a double to the corner in LF, which wouldn't have been enough for everyone to go bat-poop crazy had Michael Lorenzen not been put in as a pinch-runner for Pena. Lorenzen, however, can run like a deer, and he kicked into high gear while rounding 2B and scored easily to seal the victory. Reds win, 4-3!
- Zack Cozart did not start this game, as his ailing wrist had him on the bench yet again. Kris Negron got the start instead, but Cozy did manage a pinch-hit appearance.
- Brandon Phillips left the game after the Top of the 8th in favor of Skip Schumaker, and Jim Day later reported that BP left to have X-Rays on his left big toe, which he apparently injured while playing the field. Not bueno. Not bueno at all.
- Joey Votto went 0 for 2 with 2 walks and a run scored, dropping his average below .300 and causing absolutely nobody to panic since he's still ridiculously amazing and awesome and better than every other 1B.
- Rookie Raisel Iglesias will get the start for the Reds in the rubber match of the series tomorrow at 7:10 PM EDT, and he'll be opposed by Eric Stults. Be honest...you have no idea who Eric Stults is.
- Tunes Devin can sing loudly to anyone who asks for the next 24 hours.