The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Adam Duvall smacked a pair of doubles on Saturday against the Philadelphia Phillies, in the process raising his already impressive season OPS to a rather nice .869 mark. At one point, Duvall was seen as merely a throw-in as part of the trade that sent Mike Leake from the Cincinnati Reds to the San Francisco Giants last July, since at the time Keury Mella was ranked by many as the top prospect in the entire Giants system. So far, though, Duvall has shown the enterprise to be a decent part of the Cincinnati rebuild, one that just might carve out a serious role for the next few seasons.
So, congrats Mr. Duvall from Louisville, and have yourself a trophy.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Jose Peraza, who singled in his first PA as a Red; Tim Adleman, who was relatively solid in his start, allowing 3 ER in 5 IP; Joey Votto, who walked twice; Jay Bruce, who singled and walked; and Layne Somsen, who finally made his big league debut (in his second call-up), tossing a scoreless inning in relief.
- The first three batters of the Top of the 1st reached base for the Reds, and no, that's not just me effing with you late on a Saturday night. Both Cozart and Peraza slapped singles to LF in front of a walk by Votto - after an 0-2 count, mind you - and Cozart poached home when Ryan Howard caught a pop-out in foul ground off the bat of Brandon Phillips and took a bit too long to recognize that the runner at 3B might actually be tagging. A Jay Bruce K and an odd (potentially missed hit and run?) caught stealing of 2B by Votto ending what could've been a promising inning, though, but the Reds still led, 1-0.
- Adleman cruised through the opposing lineup the first time, but he ran into a bit of trouble in the Bottom of the 4th when facing them a second time. Cesar Hernandez walked and presumably stole 2B, though the Reds challenged the call and replay overturned the call to an out. Unfortunately, back to back 2-out doubles by Maikel Franco and Howard got the Phils on the board. Game tied, 1-1.
- Philadelphia pushed a pair of runs across in the Bottom of the 5th, and it was the back-end of their lineup that was responsible for setting the table. Tyler Goeddel singled to lead off the inning, and pitcher Aaron Nola then drew a walk after being down 0-2. Lo and behold, that haunted. Both runners moved up on a sac bunt by Peter Bourjos, and back to back singles from Odubel Herrera and Hernandez each then drove in a run. Reds trailed, 3-1.
- The Reds struck back against Nola in the Top of the 7th. Brandon Phillips singled up the middle to lead off the inning, and he moved to 3B when a swinging bunt by Bruce prompted Phillies catcher Cameron Rupp to try to get the out at 2B. Rupp's throw went awry, however, and that left runners at the corners. Duvall then doubled down the LF line to score Phillips and move Bruce up to 3B, but Ramon Cabrera struck out to end the inning on a called strike three that almost certainly should've been ball three. Reds trailed, 3-2.
- The Reds' bullpen took over beginning in the Bottom of the 7th, and you can probably predictably potentially partially predict how the turn of events evolved. J.C. Ramirez was tasked with the job in this instance, and he promptly served up a 1-out solo dinger to Odubel Herrera (that was upheld after review despite apparent fan interference). Reds trailed, 4-2.
- Duvall inched the Reds closer in the Top of the 9th, as his double after a Jay Bruce walk and Eugenio Suarez single scored Jay off of Andrew Bailey. After a Tucker Barnhart ground-out, Jordan Pacheco was brought in for a pinch-hit chance, and he promptly lifted a fly ball to LF that looked as if it would bring in the game's tying run. Instead, Goeddel threw a rope to Rupp that brought the Phillies catcher into the path of Suarez, and a major collision ensued. Replay confirmed that Rupp wasn't blocking the path - only following the flight of the ball once it got to him - and the call stood as an inning-ending, and game-ending double play. Reds lost, 4-3.
- This one finally started after a 38 minute rain delay. We're still awaiting word on who, in fact, was in charge of making it rain. (CHUH CHUH.)
- This other note is about the ending. This sentence is here to partially explain the last one. At least the Reds are doing what they can to provide drama where drama shouldn't really exist, right?
- Dan Straily will take the mound for the series finale on Sunday, with Adam Morgan - whom I'm sure you're familiar with in a very Tim Adlemany way - opposing him for Philadelphia. First pitch is set for 1:35 PM ET.