The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Billy Hamilton had no hits on the night. No walks, no nothin’.
He did, however, beat out the relay throw on a would-be double play that would’ve ended the game in the Top of the 9th, and after that did nothing but pump helium into his own legend. On 1B with Zack Cozart at the plate and Arismendy Alcantara at 3B with 2-outs, Billy took off on the pitch that Cozart ultimately dinked into LF for a soft single that scored Alcantara, but when Michael Brantley dove to try to make the game-ending catch and came up short, Hamilton motored all the way around to score the go-ahead run in the unlikeliest of fashions.
That’s Billy for ya. The speed, the wherewithal, the what-the-helledness that makes him one of the absolute most unique players in the game today. And today, it was good enough to get the Reds a much needed win in spectacular fashion.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Adam Duvall, who cranked a 2-run dinger; Scooter Gennett, who went 2 for 4 as the team’s DH on the night; Joey Votto, who singled, walked, and scored; Jose Peraza, who singled to extend his hitting streak to 11 games; Blake Wood, who fired a pair of scoreless innings from the bullpen; Zack Cozart, who dumped the winning single into LF and drove in a pair; and Lisalverto Bonilla, who was again reasonably cromulent in his 5 innings of work as the starter.
- A swinging bunt down the 3B line dribbled slowly enough for Michael Brantley to leg out a single in the Bottom of the 3rd, and that proved costly when Carlos Santana followed with a thoroughly pounded 2-run dinger just inside the RF foul pole a batter later. Reds trailed, 2-0.
- The Reds countered with a single-dinger combo of their own a half-inning later, as Duvall smashed a 2-run homer over the wall in CF immediately after Votto had singled into RF. Game tied, 2-2.
- Cincinnati had the bases loaded with only 1-out in the Top of the 5th with Votto and Duvall next up and failed to score, and with a gigantic pile of rain bearing down on them that seemed quite relevant. Even more so when Santana doubled to the RF wall in the Bottom of the 5th to plate a run as the rain poured down and the game became officially official. Reds trailed, 3-2, and a lengthy rain delay followed soon after.
- Play resumed, the score remained, and the Reds were faced with the game on the line trailing by a run in the Top of the 9th. Gennett singled to start things, and Tucker Barnhart then singled to leave runners at 1B and 2B. Then, the Reds chose to bunt, which dumbs my brain so damn dumb that the dumbness hurts my soul. Obviously, it didn’t work, they gave away an out when Gennett was out by feet at 3B, and all of us collectively got dumber because of it. Billy Hamilton then hit into what was originally a 3-6-3 double play, but replay eventually overturned that Hamilton was out at 1B. That left runners at the corners with Cozart at the plate, and he responded with a single into LF that scored Arismendy Alcantara - who was running for Barnhart - and Hamilton, who had taken off on the pitch from 1B and scored because he’s faster than a gawdang Lamborghini. Reds led, 4-3.
- After that, Raisel Iglesias was tasked with closing out the game, and that’s exactly what he did (after allowing a pair of baserunners to make us all a bit nervous). Reds won, 4-3!
- Lisalverto Bonilla’s final line: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 K on 80 pitches. Not the best start, of course, but given what his peers in the rotational rotation have provided in recent weeks, that’s perfectly acceptable.
- Tim Adleman will look to whittle down his 6.19 ERA when he gets the start Thursday in the series finale against Cleveland. Mike Clevinger will toe the rubber opposite Adleman, with first pitch set again for 6:10 PM ET.
- Billy freakin’ Hamilton, y’all.