The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Jose Peraza was thrown out at home with Joey Votto at the plate and Eugenio Suarez on 1B with 1-out in the Bottom of the 3rd inning on Wednesday, but considering the other foibles produced by a largely lackluster Cincinnati Reds team, that barely moved the needle.
What did move the needle was Peraza's bat yet again, as the he tallied a 4 hit, 2 double, 2 RBI afternoon from the leadoff spot. He's brought his batting average all the way up to .347 for the season after hitting at a near .500 clip since being recalled from AAA Louisville, and that paired with the first regular playing time of his career has been quite the sight to behold of late. He erred on a bad hop while returning to SS today, but it's hard to truly fault him since he's spent much of the time since Billy Hamilton injured his oblique playing in the OF.
Today's was a messy, ugly one, but Peraza again showed the kind of promise that the Reds hoped they'd see when they agreed to trade Todd Frazier, at least. So, he gets a trophy.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Anthony DeSclafani, who allowed just 3 runs (2 earned) in 6 IP, striking out 7 against 7 hits and a lone walk (with one brainfart included, which we'll get to below); Scott Schebler, who singled twice, walked twice, and scored a run (with a baserunning brainfart and a booted ball in the OF); Jumbo Diaz, who cleaned up nicely for Wandy Peralta by recording 3 outs (2 via K) after taking over with 2 on and none out; and Eugenio Suarez, who singled twice.
- Dingers have been the storyline in this series, and that was the case immediately on Wednesday. The first pitch DeSclafani threw? Dinger into the RF seats off the bat of Jose Reyes. Reds trailed in a blink, 1-0.
- The Reds farted their way into allowing the Mets to score again in the Top of the 3rd, and that came on the heels of running their way out of scoring chances in the Bottom of the 2nd. In said Bottom of the 2nd, both Brandon Phillips and Scott Schebler were thrown out trying to steal 2B - Schebler without even sliding on what appeared to be a missed hit & run call. In the next half-inning, Syndergaard singled up the middle with BP not even breaking right to try to field it, and after Reyes reached on a force-play at 2B, he stole 2B and then moved to 3B on a booted ball on a grounder to Peraza. Reyes then scored on a wild pitch by DeSclafani after Disco airballed on covering home despite a great effort by Tucker Barnhart. Blech. Reds trailed, 2-0.
- Curtis Granderson dingered yesterday to CF, and he did so again today, mauling a Disco meatball onto the grass beyond the wall in the Top of the 6th to put the Reds behind, 3-0.
- Wandy Peralta took over for the Top of the 8th, and that went not well. He allowed a leadoff single to Granderson before Wilmer Flores smacked a pinch-hit homer into the bullpens beyond the left-center wall, and the Reds then trailed, 5-0.
- Cincinnati finally kicked their offense into gear in the Bottom of the 8th against Gabriel Ynoa. Adam Duvall walked to begin things, and that was followed by back to back singles from Phillips and Schebler to load the bases. After Tyler Holt K'd looking, Tucker Barnhart dumped a single into the OF to score Duvall and reload the bases. A slow grounder by Ramon Cabrera only netted an out at home, which brought Peraza to the plate with a lightning bolt of a bat in his hands. He smoked a 2-run double off the top of the wall in LF (that was feet from a grand slam), and that drew the Reds within a pair at 5-3.
- Tony Cingrani took the mound for the Top of the 9th, and back to back doubles by Asdrubal Cabrera and Yoenis Cespedes tacked on another run for the Mets. That was enough for the Mets, as Jeurys Familia shut down the Reds in the Bottom of the 9th to lock up the 4,677th consecutive win for New York over Cincinnati, 5-3.
- Prior to the start of today's game, the Reds officially signed Cuban righty Vladimir Gutierrez, according to The Enquirer's C. Trent Rosecrans. It had been reported some two weeks ago that the Reds had reached an agreement to sign the 20 year old to a $4.75 million bonus (with a 100% international signing tax making it cost $9.5 million to the Reds' checkbook), but the deal only became official after he came to town and passed his physical.
- MLB Pipeline updated the Reds Top 30 overall prospects to reflect said signing, placing the talented young righthander 8th in the team's system.
- The Mets TV broadcast - which anyone who watched this game was following since FS-Ohio wasn't televising this one - wasn't exactly on the ball early. In Votto's first PA, Keith Hernandez said, "Votto has lost his line drive stroke" merely seconds after Baseball Reference had tweeted that Votto had legitimately the single best line-drive percentage in all of MLB. They also stated that Votto "thinks too much" at the plate.
- Joey Votto entered today hitting .312/.434/.523, leading the NL in OBP and all of baseball in walks. Since the start of the 2015 season, he's leading the entire NL in wOBA and wRC+ (2nd in all of MLB to Mike Trout in both). Obviously, if he didn't think so much at the plate, he could swing the bat with his teeth and set the all-time home run record, right?
- The Reds will head up the road to Pittsburgh this afternoon, and tomorrow they'll take on the Pirates in the first game of a four game (in three days) series. Pittsburgh, of course, entered today having lost eight consecutive games, and their playoff hopes are officially on life support, meaning a good thumpin' by the Reds could effectively finish off their season. Dan Straily will toe the rubber in Thursday's contest, with Ivan Nova opposing him. First pitch is set for 7:05 PM ET.