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Reds score eight in 8th inning rally to beat Royals

A late table-turning landed the Reds their third win in a row.

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

It has been a relatively slow start to Cactus League play for Jesse Winker, especially compared to the other position players in the youth movement in Cincinnati Reds camp. While both Jose Peraza and Dilson Herrera have jumped out to great offensive starts, it took until Saturday for Winker to smack around some pitching and join in on the parade.

In today's comeback win over the Kansas City Royals, Winker DH'd in the 6th spot in the order, and responded to staying in the game throughout by going 3 for 4 with a ribbie and a run scored. Hopefully this is a sign of a solid offensive tear for Winker, who entered camp with an outside chance of breaking into the Opening Day 25 (but will likely begin in Louisville to keep his service clock from starting). Either way, Winker's got a lot riding on the next three weeks, so here's to this being the start of a breakout.

Honorable Mentions are due to: Scott Feldman, who K'd 3 and allowed just a single hit in his 3 scoreless IP; Arismendy Alcantara, who smoked a 3-run tater; Joey Votto, who doubled and walked; Blake Trahan, who went 2 for 2 with a double, run scored, and a pair driven in; Phil Ervin, who doubled and scored; and Barrett Astin, who shut down the Royals in order for the save in the 9th.

Key Plays

  • The Reds jumped on top early in this one, plating a lone run in the Bottom of the 2nd on Brantly’s double (which scored Kivlehan, who had singled in front of him). Reds led, 1-0.
  • After Feldman gave way to Drew Storen, the pitching wheels quickly fell off. Storen took the mound for the Top of the 4th, and he yielded dingers to both Samir Duenez and Jorge Bonifacio - the first a 3-run bomb, and the latter of the 2-run variety. #AllOfASudden, the Reds trailed, 5-1.
  • Cody Reed took the mound after Storen’s meltdown, and after he tossed a 1-2-3 Top of the 5th, Kansas City scored twice in the Top of the 6th. Tony Renda’s error on Duenez’s grounder turned a single into a man on 2B, but that mattered little when former Red Brayan Pena doubled to score him anyway. Back to back singles from Bonifacio and Christian Colon scored the 1/(fleet footed) Pena, and the Reds found themselves trailing, 7-1.
  • Two-thirds of the projected Opening Day outfield for the Louisville Bats combined to get the Reds back on the board in the Bottom of the 8th. Ervin poked a double off Jonathan Sanchez to lead off the inning, and he later scored after a wild pitch moved him to 3B and Winker smacked a single to drive him in. Keep in mind that this is the same Jonathan Sanchez that was once in Reds' camp in recent years and threw about as many strikes at this stage of his career as you do. Winker's single was followed by one from Hernan Iribarren, Stuart Turner then walked with the bases loaded to drive in another run, all of which set the stage for Trahan's 2-run double and another RBI single by Gabby Guerrero before Sanchez's day was done. Reid Redman took over for him with runners on the corners and nobody out with the game sitting 7-6 before serving up a 3-run meatball to Alcantara that flipped the scoreboard. Reds led, 9-7.
  • After that, Astin made quick work of Kansas City in the 9th, and that was that. Reds win, 9-7!
Almost April G-raph

Other Notes
  • Brandon Finnegan will toe the rubber for the Reds on Sunday when they take on the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim from California part of the United States on the continent of North America property of Earth member of the Solar System a division of the Milky Way care of The Universe. Tempe Diablo Stadium will play host, the talented Garrett Richards will start for LA, and first pitch is set for 3:10 PM ET.
  • Best I can tell, Mike Trout hasn't played yet today in LA's game against the Chicago White Sox, which means it's likely he'll be in the lineup for tomorrow's game. That would be infinitely cooler if A) the game was actually being televised in the Cincinnati area (it's not, but it should have an feed) or B) if Joey Votto was slated to be in the lineup again tomorrow (he played today, so he likely won't be).
  • For reference, over the last two seasons by most every advanced offensive metric - OPS, OPS+, wOBA, wRC+, etc. - Trout and Votto have been the two best hitters on the planet. It'd be nice to see the two of them do their thing on the same field on the same day, but I digress.
  • Tunes.