The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Sal Romano became the first Cincinnati Reds pitcher to actually fire 8 innings during the 2018 season on Tuesday, doing so against the Kansas City Royals in largely effective fashion. Mustang Sally fanned just 2 against a lone walk in his effort, but limited the Royals to just 4 hits in his time on the mound, which was a welcome sign given how he’d struggled in recent starts coming in.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Tucker Barnhart, who had a 2 for 5 night with the late dinger to send this one into extras; Joey Votto, who walked and bonked a 3-run game-winner of a triple; Scooter Gennett, who singled and walked; and Jesse Winker, who walked twice and made a great catch at the wall in the Bottom of the 9th to prolong the game.
- Hunter Dozier hit a ball about a billion miles per hour off Romano in the Bottom of the 6th, and it went for a solo dinger into the seats in left-center to put the Reds in a 1-0 hole.
- The Reds entered the Top of the 9th still trailing by that 1-0 count, but that was rectified by Tucker mauling a Kelvin Herrera meatball for a solo dinger over the RF wall, and that squared things and sent this game between two teams who each were already 20 games under the .500 mark into extra innings.
- Cincinnati caused official scorers everywhere to dump their books in a shredder in the Top of the 10th off Royals reliever Kevin McCarthy. Jose Peraza began the silliness by advancing to 2B on a dink of a grounder that was overthrown at 1B, but he was then thrown out at 3B a batter later on Billy Hamilton’s not-so-well-placed bunt. Still, a Scott Schebler single put runners at the corners with 1-out, and the bases then remained loaded after Tucker’s grounder back up the middle resulted in the bases loaded after Hamilton somehow, some way wriggled out of a rundown. That brought Votto to the plate, and he responded with a bases-clearing triple to the wall in right-center, and the Reds were up 4-1. Eugenio Suarez - because he’s awesome - then added a single to score Votto, and thanks to Amir Garrett’s efficient work in the Bottom of the 10th, that’s how things finished.
- Ian Kennedy entered play tonight with a 5.76 ERA on the season and a 9.42 ERA (!!) over his previous 6 games started, so of course he threw 8 innings of shutout ball on the evening.
- This quick two-game interleague set will wrap on Wednesday with Tyler Mahle pitching for the Reds opposite Kansas City starter Jason Hammel. First pitch is again set for 8:15 PM ET.