The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Zack Cozart owns a .344/.432/.622 batting line this season.
Zack Cozart owned a .246/.289/.385 batting line in his career prior to this season.
On Sunday, Zack had himself a day unlike any other he’s had in two, maybe six days, homering twice, tripling, coaxing a walk, and driving in five runs, and the miracle season for the Cincinnati Reds SS just keeps on keepin’ on despite another abysmal outing from a starting pitcher. It’s been remarkable to watch, it just keeps on being absurd, but it’s an excellent situation for both the Reds - in trade value purpose - and for Cozart - since he’s about to be a free agent for the first time.
What to make of it all, I do not know, aside from it ensuring that Billy Hamilton will hit .350/.450/.700 in 2019, if the pattern holds.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Arismendy Alcantara, who homered and made a nifty play spelling Billy in CF; Joey Votto, who went 2 for 4 with a double and a walk; and Tucker Barnhart, who doubled twice.
- Atlanta got on the board in the Top of the 1st in the most uncharacteristic of ways: a Zack Cozart overthrow of 1B on a routine grounder allowed Ender Inciarte - who had singled - to score from 2B with 2-outs. Reds trailed, 1-0.
- Cozart wasted little time in getting that run, however, as he blasted a 2-run homer off Julio Teheran in the Bottom of the 1st, scoring Jose Peraza - who had singled to leadoff the inning. Reds led, 2-1.
- That lead was also short lived, however, as Amir Garrett returned the favor by allowing a 2-run homer to Danny Santana with nobody out in the Top of the 2nd. Whatever a “Johan Camargo” is then doubled to the wall in right-center, moved to 3B on a gritty bunt, and scored when Inciarte’s pop-up fell just inside the LF line behind 3B. Reds trailed, 4-2.
- Then came the Top of the 3rd, what has been the “hold my beer” of innings for Cincinnati starting pitching so far this year. Matt Adams homered. Inciarte homered. A pile of folks got hits in between those two dingers, and Garrett was chased with the Reds down 9-2.
- ‘twas a kick in the shins that Jake Buchanan was even in the game for the Reds as early as the 3rd inning, but he did his part in the Bottom of the 4th, poking his first career hit into LF with runners on 2B & 3B, driving in a run. Both Buchanan and Tucker Barnhart - who was on via single - then scored on a Cozart liner to CF that Inciarte dived for, appeared to think he caught, only for it to be a complete airball that went to the wall for a bases clearing triple. Reds trailed, 9-5.
- Camargo scored again on the Reds in the Top of the 5th, as did Tyler Flowers, who led off the inning by being plunked by Buchanan. Reds trailed, 11-5.
- Eugenio Suarez singled in front of Alcantara in the Bottom of the 5th, who backed it up with his 1st dinger of the season, a 2-run shot off Teheran to bring the Reds within 4 at 11-7.
- Cozart, as he is wont to do, pulled the Reds closer once again, homering in the Bottom of the 6th off Jason Motte, a solo shot this time that left the Reds behind, 11-8.
- Somewhat miraculously, the scoring completely dried up at that point, and the Reds...just kidding. Blake Wood took over in the Top of the 9th, hit a guy, allowed a hit to Inciarte, and generally participated fully in the pitching theme of the day while allowing a pair of runs. That left the score at 13-8, which was how it ended.
- I have both Julio Teheran and Amir Garrett on my fantasy team.
- Garrett, for the record, even tried wearing high socks in this one. After allowing 8 ER and needing 85 pitches to record just 8 outs, I’m guessing they aren’t about to start a trend. Jackson Stephens was optioned back to AAA to make way for Garrett’s return from the DL to make this start, by the way.
- Speaking of which, Tony Cingrani threw another relief inning for AAA Louisville yesterday, and with his return to Cincinnati imminent, sommmmmebody’s going to have to get optioned to make room for him.
- Muddying that: the shoulder injuries suffered by both Hamilton and Scott Schebler last night. There was no official word on their respective statuses today, though I’d imagine we’ll hear more by this time tomorrow. For the record, Bryan Price has stated that he doesn’t think either injury is too serious.
- The Reds will welcome the St. Louis Cardinals to GABP on Monday to begin a four-game series. Carlos Martinez will start Game 1 for St. Louis, and he’ll be opposed by Asher Wojciechowski. First pitch is set for 7:10 PM ET.