The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Cody Reed started for the sixth time in his MLB career on Tuesday. In the first five, he'd been wedgied, shoved in lockers, sprayed with shaving cream, and had his lunch money stolen. It hadn't been pretty, as his 8.39 ERA entering tonight's start against the Atlanta Braves indicated, but his 10.6 K/9 and unsustainably high HR/FB% suggested that he'd been unlucky as well as inexperienced.
Reed finally settled down in start number six, however, and for that he gets tonight's JNMHSotG, one part for how he pitched on the evening and another as a spur to replicate, replicate, replicate. Reed reads Red Reporter, I'm sure. The uber-talented young lefty notched his first quality start after allowing nary an earned run in his 6 IP, scattering 5 hits and 2 walks while striking out 5. He threw 94 pitches, avoided a blow up after early defensive miscues led to a pair of unearned runs, and on the whole seemed to take the next step in his development.
How big of a step? I do not know, but he certainly will benefit from having finally logged a big league outing that'll make him sleep well at night.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Joey Votto, who singled twice, scored, walked three times, and bumped his season OBP to .403 - which is just the most damn sexy thing I've seen all day; Jay Bruce, who dingered and drove in a pair; Eugenio Suarez, who went 3 for 5 with a run scored; Jumbo Diaz, who tossed a pair of scoreless innings in relief; and Adam Duvall, who singled and walked.
- Votto walked, Bruce dingered. That was your Bottom of the 1st, and it's a beautiful combo that has been written about time and time again. But with the non-waiver trade deadline less than two weeks away, it just hit me that I may not have many chances to write that again. Damn. Still, Reds led, 2-0.
- Atlanta leveled in the Top of the 2nd, however, and a pile of bad baseball by the baseballing Reds was behind it. Nick Markakis singled to begin things, and Ender Inciarte reached two batters later when Eugenio Suarez booted another ball at 3B. Reed then walked Anthony Recker to load the bases, and a pair of runs then scored on an Erick Aybar single when Bruce bobbled fielding it in RF. Error-walk-error is the baseball vintage of fat-drunk-stupid. Game tied, 2-2.
- Unfortunately, the bullpen - although it's at least worth mentioning that they've been pitching great of late, though that wasn't at all the case in the Top of the 7th. Michael Lorenzen took over for Reed, and he promptly walked Aybar to lead off, and that haunted when he served up a 2-run dinger to Gordon Beckham later in the inning. Reds trailed, 4-2.
- Cincinnati mounted a meaty rally in the Bottom of the 9th, however. Suarez dumped a single into RF to lead off the inning, and he motored all the way to 3B when Ramon Cabrera then blooped a double down the LF line. Jose Peraza came in to run for Cabrera, and after a productive grounder by Tucker Barnhart brought in Suarez, Peraza scored on a single by Zack Cozart. Cozart was then nailed trying to turn it into a double, and that proved dumb when Billy Hamilton followed with an infield single. Billy, for what it's worth, dumbed equally when he tried to steal 2B and was picked off with 2-outs, since that left the white hot Votto holding the bat in the batters box unable to use it. Still, they went to extras with the game tied, 4-4.
- Nick Markakis singled off Tony Cingrani to begin the Top of the 11th, and that brought Blake Wood in from the pen. A single by Jeff Francoeur moved Markakis all the way to 3B, and he scored on a sac fly by Inciarte to put the Braves ahead 5-4, and unfortunately that's where things ended. Reds lost.
- Right-hander Jon Moscot had Tommy John surgery today, as he revealed to us all on Twitter. It's a bit of a bummer for him that it happened while he was in Louisville, as he'll be on the MiLB DL for at least the next calendar year instead of accruing service time on the big league DL. Best wishes on a quick recovery, Jon.
- The Reds claimed RHP Abel De Los Santos from the Nationals on Tuesday, and then optioned him to AA Pensacola. He's a decently talented reliever who ranked as the #22 prospect in the Washington system (according to MLBPipeline.com) after having been traded there by the Texas Rangers as part of the Ross Detwiler deal a bit ago.
- After Joey Votto's walk in the Bottom of the 5th, his season OBP sat at .399. Grass is green, and the sun will rise in the morning.
- Day game tomorrow to wrap the series, as Anthony DeSclafani will look to slice more eyeballs opposite Lucas Harrell. First pitch is set for 12:35 PM ET, so plan to nerble away your afternoon by watching some baseball. Rumor has it that MLB Network will be televising it.