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Homers doom Luis Castillo, Reds lose to Diamondbacks 9-2

The longballs bit both Castillo and reliever Keury Mella.

Arizona Diamondbacks v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Jose Peraza went 2 for 4 with a triple and a run scored, pacing what little offense the Cincinnati Reds could muster on the day from the leadoff spot. It was yet another solid outing for the everyday shortstop in what has increasingly become a solid campaign just a year after he was largely relegated to a utility role after losing his 2B spot to Scooter Gennett.

Good on ya, Jose. You’re one of the few Reds who shouldn’t completely forget about this one.

Honorable Mentions are due to: Eugenio Suarez, who had a 2 for 4 day with a run scored; and Michael Lorenzen, who fired a scoreless inning of relief.

Key Plays

  • Despite having Daniel Descalso in an 0-2 count with 2-out in the Top of the 1st, Luis Castillo hummed a 96 mph heater over the outside part of the plate to the lefty swinger, who turned it around for a homer over the wall in CF. That was extra bad because both Jon Jay and David Peralta were on base, the former due to a single and the latter due to a walk. Reds trailed early, 3-0.
  • Cincinnati got a run back off Zack Godley in the Bottom of the 2nd, however. Eugenio Suarez led off with a single, and he moved to 2B on a later Mason Williams single. Preston Tucker then hit a 1-out grounder to 1B that appeared to be a potential inning-ending double play ball, but the relay throw from SS Nick Ahmed back to 1B - with Godley covering the bag as the pitcher - got away, and Suarez scooted all the way around to score. Reds trailed, 3-1.
  • The Reds tacked on another run in the Bottom of the 3rd. Peraza poked an opposite-field triple into the RF corner, and he later scored on a sac fly into CF off the bat of Joey Votto. Reds trailed, 3-2.
  • Castillo settled in after his 1st inning meatball, retiring each and every batter he faced from that point through the end of the Top of the 5th. Of course, his Jekyll/Hyde season reared up immediately following that bout of excellence, as he allowed a leadoff single to Jay to open the Top of the 6th that was followed by a meatball to Paul Goldschmidt that the Arizona 1B punished for a 2-run, opposite-field dinger. Just like that, after a string of elite pitching, the Reds trailed 5-2.
  • Arizona dropped a 4-spot on the Reds in the Top of the 9th, as Keury Mella served up a trio of 2-out homers, which was just about the worst way possible to wrap what had otherwise been a decent series to open the homestand. That ended the scoring on the day, and the Reds fell, 9-2.

Tony Graphanino

Source: FanGraphs

Other Notes

  • Luis Castillo’s final line did nothing to truly show how excellent he looked for an extended period in this one, which is a sentence that can pretty adequately sum up a number of his outings this season, unfortunately. He retired 13 consecutive batters at one point, yet his overall body of work - 5.2 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, BB, 7 K on 88 pitches - looks awful. That’s what happens when the two biggest meatballs you serve up on the day come in big situations with men on base.
  • Today’s result was frustrating given the potential it had for another win, but a series victory over a good Arizona team with this current depleted roster is still a plus, all told.
  • Cleveland will be in GABP for a three game series beginning Monday, with Mike Clevinger slated to start for the Reds’ AL rivals. Homer Bailey will start again for Cincinnati with hopes that he looks completely different than in his last outing, when he allowed 11 hits while recording just 10 outs.
  • Tunes.