The road-Reds jumped on Chicago starter Jordan Guerrero early and often, getting RBI singles from both Scott Schebler and Cliff Pennington to take a 2-0 lead in the Top of the 1st. After leaving the bases loaded, they re-raked in the Top of the 2nd, as Jesse Winker singled on a sharp liner into RF and later scored on Eugenio Suarez’s 2-run blast to make it a 4-0 lead.
Avisail Garcia finally got Chicago on the board in the Bottom of the 4th, poking an RBI single into CF off non-roster invitee Vance Worley to make it a 4-1 game. Worley dissolved from that point forward, allowing five hits in a row before exiting after 1 1⁄3 IP, and a sixth consecutive hit after he left put the Reds behind, 5-4. All 5 runs were charged as earned to Worley, which will surely put a dent in his chance of making the club.
Matt Davidson thumped a 3-run homer off Wandy Peralta in the Bottom of the 5th, and that left the Reds behind 8-4.
Aristides Aquino did add a dinger, a solo blast down the LF line in the Top of the 8th to make it an 8-5 game. That, though, proved to be the final run of the day for the Reds, as they fell by that 8-5 count.
On the mound, Luis Castillo pounded the zone, and retired the final six batters he faced after allowing a leadoff single. The White Sox radio broadcast was impressed with the tail on his mid-90’s fastball, and noted that he was working quickly and that almost everything he threw was on the plate. Spring pitch counts are notoriously ill-tracked, but I’m pretty certain he needed only 23-24 pitches to complete his two innings of work, in which he allowed a lone single while also logging a K. Similarly, Amir Garrett logged some impressive work, fanning a pair in a 1-2-3 Bottom of the 7th and another pair in his scoreless Bottom of the 8th.
Reds 2, Cleveland 2 (F/9)
Cleveland’s Jason Kipnis broke the 0-0 tie with a solo dinger over the RF wall in the Top of the 3rd, and it was David Hernandez who served it up for the home-Reds. After that, though, it was the pitching that took over for both sides, as Jared Hughes, Kevin Quackenbush, and Jose Lopez kept the Cleveland bats stifled while Trevor Bauer, Zach McAllister, and Stephen Fife held the Reds in check.
That changed in the Bottom of the 6th, though, as the Reds strung together a series of hits from their top of the order, and a double by Tony Cruz drove in the Reds’ second run of the inning to go ahead, 2-1.
Ben Rowen got a pair of outs in the Top of the 9th that nearly got the Reds a win, but a Greg Allen RBI triple to the wall in CF plated a game-tying run to make it 2-2. As a tie it would finish, too, given the Reds having half their roster miles away in another game.
On the mound, the Reds got excellent outings all around, with Homer Bailey looking particularly sharp in his debut. He threw 29 pitches, allowing a pair of hits and nary a run in his 2 IP, fanning 3 while walking nobody. Similarly, Jose Lopez looked quite sharp, the recent 40-man addition fanning 4 in his pair of innings while scattered a pair of singles.
- On the TV broadcast of the Cleveland game, Jim Day interviewed Joey Votto, who subsequently turned the interview on its head by proposing a new pregame segment called “Gym Day with Jim Day,” which is the most terribly amazing idea in modern television history.
- Votto, by the way, was on base twice on the day, once via walk and once after being doinked by a pitch on his right elbow.
- Nick Senzel got the start against Cleveland, though it came at 3B instead of at SS. It sounds as if the Reds do intend to eventually get him Cactus League games at SS, though, as The Athletic’s C. Trent Rosecrans reported. He went 1 for 3 with a single and a run scored.
- Brandon Finnegan would be the logical choice to see start Monday’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, but it seems that’s not yet been officially announced. We do know, though, that game will begin at 3:05 PM ET per usual at Goodyear Stadium.