The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Eugenio Suarez had a three hit evening, and having him near the top of the Cincinnati Reds lineup has proven to be a fun thing to watch since he took over SS duties some 200+ PAs ago. He made a few outs on the bases, but that may just be some sort of initiation ritual for the Reds these days more than an indictment of his ability to run in a square-shaped circle.
That made no sense, and for that I apologize.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Jason Bourgeois, who had 2 hits, a triple, and scored twice; Joey Votto, who doubled and walked (yawn); Tucker Barnhart, who singled in a run; and John Lamb, who K'd 8 Snakes in his 5.1 innings of work and generally impressed despite yielding 9 hits and 3 ER.
- The Reds got a single run in each of the first two innings. In the Bottom of the 1st, singles from Bourgeois and Suarez put runners on 1B & 2B early, and after a single from Todd Frazier loaded the bases, Boozwah scored on a sac-fly to LF off the bat of Jay Bruce. Unfortunately, Suarez was nailed at 3B trying to tag, and that ended the inning. Reds led, 1-0.
- Cincinnati piled on Patrick Corbin in the Bottom of the 2nd, too, and it began with a 1-out double off the bat of Skip Schumaker. He scored on a single up the middle by Tucker Barnhart, and Barnhart scored two batters later when Boozy tripled off the wall in CF. Suarez singled to score the non-plebe, and when Votto followed with a double to the corner in LF a batter later, it took a lengthy review to determine that Suarez was out at home. Reds led, 4-0.
- Lamb cruised early, but he finally got nicked in the Top of the 5th. He left a meatball over the plate to Chris Owings, and he launched a solo dinger well over the wall in LF with nobody out. Ender Inciarte then smacked a 2-out double to RF, and he then scored on a single up the middle from A.J. Pollock. Reds led, 4-2.
- A string of singles chased Lamb in the Top of the 6th, as Aaron Hill, Yasmany Tomas, and Chris Owings put three in a row together to plate Arizona's 3rd run of the evening. Ryan Mattheus, however, came on and got the final outs of the inning to end the damage. Reds led, 4-3.
- The Top of the 8th brought a pile of questions and vitriol towards the Reds decision making, and while on the surface it was expected, the priorities of the day to day baseball of the Reds are not what they have been for the last half-decade. Burke Badenhop took over and allowed a single and a double before walking a guy to load the bases more or less intentionally, at which point Twitter exploded about why Aroldis Chapman wasn't brought in to the game. Look, Badenhop has 1) been nails since a rough first month of the season, and 2) has a pricey option for the 2016 season that the team has to make a decision on in the near future. To me, this was a chance to see if Burke could get the job done in a tight spot, the kind of spot a $4 million a year reliever would be expected to make should his option get picked up. He didn't get it done, though, as a 2-run single put the Diamondbacks ahead, but that kind of see-as-it-goes is far more valuable than asking Chapman to get a 4-out stage at this point of a lost season - not to mention that losing while gaining knowledge improves a team's upcoming draft position. Reds trailed, 5-4.
- That was it. Reds lost, 5-4.
<iframe src="http://www.fangraphs.com/graphframe.aspx?config=0&static=0&type=livewins&num=0&h=450&w=450&date=2015-08-20&team=Reds&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=2015-08-20&team=Reds&dh=0&season=2015">FanGraphs</a></span>
- If you're still hung up on the Reds win/loss record at this point in 2015, you're doing it wrong. These games are about discovering what players you have under contract (or have the option to have under contract) can provide, not about making what could be the top trade piece you've got pitch in situations he's not pitched in recently. Reach that conclusion and you'll get to see another 40ish games with a lot less frustration.
- When Suarez was ruled out at home in the 2nd, the replay never showed the Diamondbacks' catcher actually tagging him. The initial ruling on the field was that Suarez was out, however, and as the replay rolled over and over, it also never appeared to show Suarez ever touching the plate. Ergo, the play stood despite a pile of odd circumstantial evidence.
- Lamb left a few runners on base when he exited in the 6th, one of whom scored to make his overall line look less impressive. On the whole, though, he showed a versatile repertoire on the mound and genuinely impressed the heck out of me. Right on, John.
- David Holmberg will take the mound for the Reds tomorrow. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM ET.
- For the first time in forever, relevant tunes.