The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Brandon Phillips launched a double off the wall in LF, drove in the only Cincinnati Reds run of the day, and made a highlight reel over-the-shoulder catch in short RF against the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday, and while the good guys were busy getting thoroughly shut down, that was good enough to take today's JNMHSotG trophy. Beers starter Taylor Jungmann had put up a fear-inducing 6.37 ERA in 59.1 AAA innings in 2015 prior to his recent call-up to the big leagues, and he did his damnedest to make sure that the final game in GABP prior to the All Star break was one Cincinnati fans will love to forget as soon as possible.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Mike Leake, who quality started in a rather ho-hum performance; Marlon Byrd, who went 2 for 3 with a pair of singles; and Billy Hamilton, who walked in a pinch-hit appearance and stole his 41st bag of the season.
- Brewers leadoff hitter Gerardo Parra smacked a 2-strike single to lead off the Top of the 1st, and usually when the leadoff hitter gets on base, it haunts. Parra's single did just that, as he moved to 2B on a walk to Ryan Braun a pair of batters later, and then scored on a single to LF from Aramis Ramirez. Reds trailed, 1-0.
- Jean Segura led off the Top of the 2nd with a single, and that also haunted when Scooter Gennett followed with a double to the corner in RF that allowed the speedy Milwaukee SS to circle the bases. Reds trailed, 2-0.
- The Brewers banged a pair of hits again in the Top of the 5th to push across another run, this time in the form of a Braun double to the wall in RF followed by an RBI single from Adam Lind (also to RF). Reds trailed, 3-0.
- Milwaukee rookie starter Taylor Jungmann took a perfect game into the Bottom of the 5th, but the Reds finally got to him with a double from Jay Bruce and a jam-shot single that landed just in front of the LF by Marlon Byrd. They didn't score, though, because of course they didn't.
- Mike Leake gave way to pinch hitter Billy Hamilton in the Bottom of the 6th, which meant the bullpen took over beginning in the Top of the 7th. Carlos Contreras got the call, and he promptly gave up a monster solo dinger to the first batter he faced, Gerardo Parra. Jonathan Lucroy then chipped in with a single before Lind destroyed a hanging change-up for a 2-run dinger well into the RF seats. Reds trailed, 6-0.
- Cincinnati finally got on the board in the Bottom of the 8th thanks to a leadoff walk from PH Skip Schumaker and a double off the wall in the LF corner by Brandon Phillips that grittily drove Skip home from 1B. Unfortunately, that was all the offense could muster, and they went meekly into the summer afternoon with an L. Reds fell, 6-0.
- Marlon Byrd has a 10 game hit streak, a pending vesting option, a non-negative season fWAR, no chance of being selected as an All Star reserve to get an extra Reds cap on the team, and experience at being an impact player after being traded mid-season. Get something for him via trade as soon as physically possible, Walt.
- Anthony DeSclafani will take the mound when the Reds take on the Washington Nationals in DC tomorrow, and he'll be doing so after throwing 122 pitches in his most recent outing. That's a pretty high number for any pitcher these days, much less for a rookie.
- Speaking of 120+ pitches and players that should probably be traded, Aroldis Chapman had thrown a grand total of 128 pitches since June 10th prior to his appearance Sunday. He threw a perfect 9th in the Reds' last inning of home baseball until after the All Star break on June 17th, which of course prompts speculation that it could've been his last pitch as a Red at home should he actually be traded. That would require the Reds' brass to concede that the team is bad and flawed with a few good assets, though, which they've given no inkling of admitting at any point in the last two difficult years.
- Marty Brennaman launched into another spiel about how Joey Votto - who is undoubtedly in a slump - is no longer an 'elite' player. Marty cited his pace of only 28ish homers and 80ish RBIs as his reasoning, for what its worth. Do yourself a favor and look up Todd Frazier's career highs in both categories.
- Milwaukee entered the series as the 2nd worst team in baseball by winning percentage. They then swept the Reds in Cincinnati by a combined score of 25-5. Ouch.
- The All Star Game starters will be announced this evening on MLB Network in a very melodramatic way. Keep your fingers crossed that Frazier's late voting push gets him in.