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Reds survive late rally to defeat Pirates, 5-4

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati Reds Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

There were a few notable efforts today, but your Star is Brandon Dixon. Dixon started at first base and got his first Major League hit, and then he got his second. And then he got his third! Have yourself a day, little fella!

Eugenio Suarez did some damage with a grand slam and Jesse Winker was 2-4 with his first home run of the season. Luis Castillo deserves a firm slap on the ass too, as he tossed six solid while only allowing two earned runs. He struck out five.

Key Plays

  • Luis Castillo and Ivan Nova dispatched the other’s lineups fairly efficiently through the first few innings, but the Reds went nanners in the third. Castillo drew a walk to lead off the inning, which, well, if you walk the pitcher to lead off an inning then it will always end up being a shame. Jesse Winker followed up with a single and Scooter Gennett reached safely due to a throwing error on Nova. Then Eugenio Suarez soccerballed one into the cheap seats and the Reds took a 4-0 lead.
  • Winker led off the fifth inning with a beautiful home run to left field of his own and the Reds extended their lead to 5-0.
  • The Pirates got to Luis Castillo in the sixth. Adam Frazier drew a one-out walk and World Series Hero David Freese socked a quackarooni way up into the bleachers to cut the lead to 5-2.
  • The Reds loaded up the bases in the bottom of the sixth. Scott Schebler and Brandon Dixon singled before Joey Votto walked. But Jesse Winker popped out to shallow left field to end the threat.
  • David Hernandez relieved Castillo for the seventh and he surrendered a one-out double to Austin Meadows. He advanced to third on a Sean Rodriguez fly out, but Amir Garrett came in to strike out Josh Bell on three pitches to shut the whole thing down.
  • Then Garrett just kept on karate-kicking the shit out of the Pirates. He struck out four in 1.2 innings and looked really handsome doing it. But after giving up a single to Corey Dickerson to start the ninth (his third inning of work), Austin Meadows hit his third homer in four days to make it a one-run game. Jared Hughes then came on to try to get the save. He got the save.

Stefi Graph

Source: FanGraphs

Other Notes

  • His home run in the fifth was actually Jesse Winker’s first home run of the season. There have always been concerns about Winker’s power, but there have always been perfectly reasonable retorts to those concerns. But it being May 24th and he just now parking one does give me a bit of pause.
  • I would be very excited if the Pirates were to announce a live staged-reading of Yertle the Turtle by Clint Hurdle.
  • Joey Votto took the day off but pinch-hit for Castillo in the bottom of the sixth. Guess what he walked lol.
  • Adam Duvall doesn’t really have any business starting for even this bad team any more. He hit a rocket line drive for an out in the sixth, but finished 0-4 with two strikeouts. I don’t know what to do with him, but “start him pretty much every day” is not the answer. His batting average is .177.
  • In his last three starts, he has struck out eight times.
  • The Reds are now preparing to head out west to the Land of Banquet Beer and Wick’s Tent for a three-game weekender against the Rockies. I think Wick is gonna be there tomorrow night, so make sure you yell really loudly at your TV so he can hear you.
  • Tunes