The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star(s) of the Game
It was too tough to choose so we're going to honor two players today. Zack Cozart continued his hot start at the plate going 3-4 with two doubles, two RBI, and a run. He raised his average to .480 this season. Clearly he won't hit this well all season, but he's given Reds' fans reason to be optimistic about his return to the lineup.
Brandon Phillips also had himself a day at the plate. He went 2-4 (also with two doubles), drove in two, scored one, and added a walk for good measure. The two hits raised his average on the season to .303. His offense has been on the decline since 2012, but he showed today that there are still going to be games when he looks like the BP of old.
Honorable Mention: Jay Bruce went 2-5 with a home run and two RBI; Brandon Finnegan went 2-2 at the plate, and didn't give up an earned run today; Tony Cingrani pitched a 1-2-3 8th inning.
Key Plays (Brace yourselves, a lot of stuff happened. I mean...a lot of stuff)
- Early on it looked like Finnegan's command was going to be a major issue again. He walked two hitters in the bottom of the first, but he was able to get out of the inning without any runs crossing the plate.
- An inning later the Cardinals did put the first runs of the game on the board. Brandon Moss led off the bottom of the second with a single. After a Jedd Gyorko pop out, Aledmys Diaz reached on an error by Scott Schebler in center. Adam Wainwright popped out, and the Cardinals had two on with two outs. The next batter, Matt Carpenter, drove home Moss with a single in to center. Okay, it's only 1-0...no big deal right? Right?!?! Stephen Piscotty promptly hit a 3 run homer. Here we go again? (Cardinals 4 - Reds 0)
- Maybe not. In the top of the 4th Joey Votto got things going with a leadoff double. Brandon Phillips walked, and then Bruce drove home Votto with an opposite field single (shameless self promotion). Devin Mesoraco made the first out of the inning with a ground ball to third, but the Reds still had runners on first and third with one out. Adam Duvall also grounded out to third, but Phillips was able to make it to the plate on the play (Cardinals 4 - Reds 2).
- An inning later the Reds were back for more. Brandon Finnegan led off with a double to help his own cause, and Zack Cozart promptly drove him in with a double of his own. Suarez and Votto were quickly retired, but Phillips drove home Cozart with the third double of the inning (Reds 4 - Cardinals 4).
- Finnegan was pinch hit for in the 6th. His final line was 5 IP, 4 H, 4 R (none earned), 4 BB, and 2 SO.
- In the top of the 6th the Reds put runs on the board for the third straight inning. Mesoraco led off the inning with a double, and Adam Duvall followed up with a single. Scott Schebler was up next and he grounded out to second. However, Devin Mesoraco was able to make it home on the play. Pacheco hit for Finnegan and singled giving the Reds runners on first and third with one out. The Cardinals brought in Seth Maness, and Zack Cozart drove home Durvall on a sac fly. BUT THAT WASN'T ALL! Actually the Reds did so much in the 6th I'm going to start a new bullet point. Just a sec.
- Eugenio Suarez doubled to drive home Pacheco, and Maness intentionally walked Votto with first base open. Apparently the Double Store was having a sale today because Brandon Phillips hit his second of the game scoring Suarez. When it was all said and done the Reds scored 4 in the inning (Reds 8 - Cardinals 4).
- Blake Wood came on to pitch the 6th for the Reds. Gyorko grounded out to start the inning. Diaz singled in to right, and Matt Adams singled in to left to beat the shift. Marty was really unhappy about the shift. Matt Carpenter grounded out to second, and St. Louis had runners on first and third with two outs. Stephen Piscotty drove home another run with a single into left (Reds 8 - Cardinals 5).
- Caleb Cotham was the Reds pitcher in the 7th. Randall Grichuk led off the inning with a walk, but Cotham responded by getting two straight outs. Grichuk advanced to second on a Cotham throwing error, and Gyorko drove Grichuk home with a single (Reds 8 - Cardinals 6).
- Jay Bruce hit a solo shot in the 9th (Reds 9 - Cardinals 6).
- J.J. Hoover gave up a lead off double in the 9th to Matt Holiday.
However, he retired the next three hitters and got his (and the Reds) first save of the season. He did get the next two hitters out, but Brandon Moss hit a two run homer to make it a one run game. Hoover then walked Jedd Gyorko, and I started to stress eat pizza. Aledmys Diaz mercifully popped out, and Hoover did end up with his first save (Reds 9 - Cardinals 8).
A FanGraph That Will Finally Make You Smile
- Mark Sheldon wrote that since 2014 Adam Wainwright was 3-0 against the Reds with an 0.39 ERA. Clearly that will change with the seven runs the Reds scored off of him today.
- C. Trent Rosecrans noted that Caleb Cotham and Blake Wood entered today's game as the only Reds' relievers not to give up a run. That is not true any more.
- The Reds hit nine doubles today. That tied the franchise record for most doubles in a game. They also hit nine doubles on May 19, 1999 against the Rockies in a game they won 24-12. It was also the record for the most doubles by an opponent at the new Busch Stadium. The MLB record is eleven by the Phillies in 1986.
- Jon Moscot will make the start for Cincinnati tomorrow against the Cardinals and Michael Wacha. Game time is set for 2:15 PM EST.