The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Tyler Mahle is a perfectly good pitcher, one whose youth suggests there’s still plenty of time for him to continue to develop into a serious cog in the Cincinnati Reds rotation for years to come.
That said, it was a slight bit improbable what Mahle pulled off on Saturday against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Mahle entered play with a 4.80 career ERA in his home starts, as well as a .977 OPS allowed to left-handed hitters. Meanwhile, the Dodgers stacked their league-best lineup with six lefties in a row, all of which spelled on-paper trouble for the 24 year old Reds righthander. So, of course Mahle completely shut them down, firing 6 innings of 4 hit, 2 walk, 5 K ball on 98 pitches. He effectively worked both sides of the plate, and held the potent Dodger bats to significantly lighter contact than they displayed in Friday night’s power-fest.
Congrats on an excellent day, Tyler.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Jesse Winker, who bashed a solo homer; Yasiel Puig, who singled twice and drove in a pair; Jose Iglesias, who had a pair of singles; and Amir Garrett, who fired yet another scoreless inning in relief (against those same potent LH bats).
- The Reds got on the board initially in this one, as Winker launched a Walker Buehler fastball over the wall in CF, a solo shot that I believe came on the 10th pitch of a well-fought at-bat. Reds led, 1-0.
- Back to back singles by Tucker Barnhart and Nick Senzel opened the Bottom of the 3rd, and that left runners on 1B and 2B for Joey Votto’s sharp grounder to SS Corey Seager. It had all the makings of a 6-4-3 double play, but Seager’s throw went wide of 2B, and that allowed Barnhart to come all the way around and score and leave Senzel on 3B with Votto on 2B and nary an out. Eugenio Suarez popped out and Winker then K’d to make us all nervous the Reds wouldn’t cash-in, but Puig came through with a huge 2-ribbie single into CF to give the Reds a 4-0 lead. That, folks, was the end of the scoring in this ol’ Reds victory.
- Today’s game was just the 14th of Mahle’s career where he’s started at home. That’s in comparison to the 22 he has started in road games since being called up to the bigs. Odd.
- The Dodgers failed to pick up an extra base hit for just the third time this season.
- It’ll be a pair of veterans on the mound for the rubber match Sunday following today’s matchup of 24 year old starters. Tanner Roark will toe the rubber for the Reds, while Hyun-Jin Ryu will go for the Dodgers. I just used the word ‘rubber’ in back to back to back sentences, counting this one. Between the lefty on the mound and the 1:10 PM start time, I’d guess it’ll be a lineup ripe for awful Facebook comments tomorrow.