Johnny Cueto gets the nod here. In what may be his final start as a Red, Cueto pitched a gem in the toughest pitching park in MLB. 8 innings, 4 hits, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts, and the Rockies didn't even manage to mount a serious threat in any inning Cueto pitched.
This game also saw some milestone numbers for a couple Reds stars on offense. Todd Frazier hit his 100th career HR to give the Reds enough offense to win the game, and Joey Votto collected his 600th career RBI as he continued his otherworldly hitting with a 2-4 night. Billy Hamilton gets an honorable mention for his 3-4 night with some havoc on the bases.
- The Reds drew first blood in the 3rd inning. Billy beat out a bunt single to lead things off. Then Brandon Phillips shot a single through the vacant 2B position on a steal/hit-and-run, which pushed Hamilton to 3B. Votto followed with a single to drive in Hamilton, and Frazier followed with his milestone HR. Jay Bruce singled, as Rockies starter Chris Rusin was getting battered. Bruce was then thrown out trying to steal, which was unfortunate, as Marlon Byrd hit a single two batters later, followed by a Suarez single pushing Byrd to 3rd (and ghost running Bruce to home plate). However, due to the extra out and Cueto coming to bat at that point, the Reds would settle for a 4-0 lead and having batted around in the inning.
- The 4th started in a similar fashion to the third, with Billy leading off and reaching base on a single. He would create some havoc. Rusin made a balk move on an attempted pickoff of Billy as he attempted to steal, but cosmic justice prevailed when Billy motored all the way to 3B after Rockies 1B Ben Paulsen made an errant throw to 2B. Joey Votto then grounded sharply to the drawn in SS, who looked Billy back before throwing Votto out at first. As soon as Tulowitzki threw to first, Billy sprinted for home plate and beat Paulsen's throw sliding under the tag. Reds led 5-0.
- The Reds would get the leadoff batter on base in the 5th and 6th innings as well, on a Jay Bruce single and a D.J. LeMahieu misplay that would be scored a single for Billy. The Reds didn't tack on to their lead in either inning.
- Things were rather uninteresting until the 9th. Jumbo Diaz was brought on to close out the 5-0 lead, and instead, as mentioned, things became unfortunately interesting. LeMahieu led off with a single, and after Tulowitzki was disposed of, Carlos Gonzalez singled, putting runners on 1st and 3rd. Descalso had an RBI groundout to make it 5-1. Dickerson then hit a routine GB that should have been the end of the game, but Suarez booted it, allowing another run to score in the process. With 2 outs and 3-run lead, Chapman was brought into the game, and finished off Michael McKenry on 3 pitches. Reds win 5-2.
- I've said most of what I want to say.
- Oh, George Grande was in the booth for this game, and the Reds still won. That is a small miracle.
- In the month of July, not including tonight, Jay Bruce has an OPS of .925, Eugenio Suarez has an OPS of .817, and Joey Votto has an OPS of 1.109. He is also (on the season) 3rd in the NL in OBP, 3rd in wRC+, 3rd in total offense created, and after tonight, probably no worse than 4th or 5th in WAR. He's elite still, if that was in question.