The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
In a season that's as punted as the Cincinnati Reds have had in the last handful of years, the single biggest thing to watch has been the cavalcade of rookie pitchers that have taken the mound day after day after day. As the Reds continue to try to sort out the rotation they'll roll out for the coming years, there have been a pile of ups and downs, but the single most solid piece they've been able to count on has been Anthony DeSclafani.
On Sunday, Disco continued to show that he's ready to be a cog in the rotation for years to come, tossing a solid 6 innings of 2 ER ball against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Both earned runs came on back to back solo shots, but aside from that half-inning misstep, he fanned 6, walked just 2, and looked largely in command against one of the best squads in all of baseball.
When the final scores no longer really matter, finding positives for the future becomes the ledger worth following, and Disco's solid season certainly qualifies.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Joey Votto, who continued his torrid stretch with a double, single, and walk; Marlon Byrd, who doubled, singled, and scored the Reds lone run; J.J. Hoover, who tossed a perfect inning in relief; Tucker Barnhart, who doubled and walked; and Manny Parra, who K'd a pair in his scoreless inning of work.
- The back half of the lineup got the Reds on the board against Zack Greinke in the Top of the 5th, and it began with a leadoff single from Byrd. He motored to 3B when Barnhart followed with a double to RF, and Byrd scored two batters later on a sac fly from Billy Hamilton. Reds led, 1-0.
- Unfortunately, the big bats in the Dodgers lineup stretch all the way up and down the lineup, and DeSclafani was made well aware of the in the Bottom of the 5th. 8-hole hitter (and Home Run Derby runner-up) Joc Pederson blasted a solo shot over the wall in CF with 1-out, and that was followed by Greinke launching a solo homer of his own. Dern. Reds trailed, 2-1.
- The Dodgers walked Votto in the Top of the 8th with a series of pitches that were closer to the dugout than to the strike zone, and that proved wise when Kenley Jansen got Todd Frazier to strikeout swinging to end the inning one batter later. That, unfortunately, was the last gasp of effort from the Reds, and the lost to the Dodgers, 2-1.
<iframe src="http://www.fangraphs.com/graphframe.aspx?config=0&static=0&type=livewins&num=0&h=450&w=450&date=2015-08-16&team=Dodgers&dh=0" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" height="450" width = "450" style="border:1px solid black;"></iframe><br /><span style="font-size:9pt;">Source: <a href="http://www.fangraphs.com/livewins.aspx?date=2015-08-16&team=Dodgers&dh=0&season=2015">FanGraphs</a></span>
- The Reds will return home to Cincinnati late Sunday after their lengthy 3 city, 10 game West Coast road trip, and they'll be cushioned by a much needed off-day on Monday.
- On Tuesday, they'll welcome the Kansas City Cuetos to town for a two-game set, which won't actually feature their former ace on the mound. That's probably a good thing, really, since I'd hate to have Johnny set the single game GABP strikeout record while wearing blue and while my eyes were too watered up to actually see it happen.
- Greinke dropped his ERA to 1.58 with his afternoon of work. He's got an opt-out clause he can exercise after the 2015 season that, if used, would make him a free agent. That's going to be a bit lucrative.