The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Honorable Mentions are due to: Josh Smith, who allowed a lone earned run in 3 IP in a spot start; Adam Duvall, who singled and walked; Brandon Phillips, who went 2 for 4 with a double; Jose Peraza, who tripled and drove in the Cincinnati Reds' lone run; and both Jumbo Diaz & Matt Magill, who tossed scoreless innings in relief in what was always destined to be a bullpen game.
Y'know, since this was always going to be a "bullpen game," the JNMHSotG is getting a "bullpen game" recognition. They can all share it in this expected drubbing.
- David Ross flipped a 2-out single into RF off Smith in the Bottom of the 2nd, and with pitcher Jon Lester stepping to the plate, that seemed innocuous enough at the time. Lester, however, belted a double to the wall in right-center, and the 77 year old Ross motored all the way around to score the game's opening run, because of course. Reds trailed, 1-0.
- Smith got through the Bottom of the 3rd in what was always going to be a bullpen game, but once Wandy Peralta took over in the Bottom of the 4th, the dookie hit the fanblades at warp speed. Peralta walked the leadoff batter in the Bottom of the 4th, walked Lester after getting a pair of groundouts, and then allowed single-double-single to Dexter Fowler, Kris Bryant, and Anthony Rizzo that saw the game broken open as the Reds then trailed, 5-0.
- Peraza got the Reds a run back in the Top of the 6th when he tripled to right-center after Steve Selsky had singled in front of him, but Chicago got that run back of Abel de los Santos in the Bottom of the 6th when Fowler led off with a walk, stole 2B, and scored on a Rizzo single. Reds trailed, 6-1.
- From that point on, the Reds went quietly, ultimately losing 6-1.
- In case you missed it, FiveThirtyEight posted an article earlier today titled "The Reds Pitching Might Be The Worst Of All Time," complete with requisite capitalization of every headline word. Of course, the article concludes that by most every single metric that hasn't perennially hated Johnny Cueto the Reds pitching staff isn't close to that awful, but I'm sure they appreciate your clicks.
- I'd love to see a cross-comparison of the worst pitching staffs by every non-FIP measure measured by price per inning of the pitchers involved relative to league average during that same timeframe, too. Actually, I wouldn't really, but it's a good way of me emblematically saying "the Reds knew they'd suck this year, had a ton of injuries, and opted not to waste money on a pitching staff that may have been slightly, slightly better." That's why J.J. Hoover, Alfredo Simon, and Ross Ohlendorf were the highest paid members of the healthy staff for much of the year despite them making roughly $4 million combined all year.
- Correlation does not always represent causation, if you will.
- Robert Stephenson will get the start for the Reds in the series finale on Wednesday, with first pitch again set for 6:05 PM ET. No day games in a midweek series at Wrigley? No day games in a midweek series at Wrigley. John Lackey will be on the mound annoyed, pissed off, and cursing for Chicago as Bob's opposition.