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Josh VanMeter homers, backs Luis Castillo to lead Reds past Cardinals 3-2

A win! A win!!

St. Louis Cardinals v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Josh Vanmeter has quietly been a steady contributor for the Cincinnati Reds in his bit-part role to date. He has absolutely mauled AAA pitching while with the Louisville Bats, but in his big league time to date he’s struggled at one, and only one thing - getting regular playing time.

Vanmeter got the start tonight in LF, and provided the single biggest swing for the Reds while facing the St. Louis Cardinals with a banged-up roster. Josh clubbed his first career big league dinger as part of a 2 hit night, and while it’s yet to be determined exactly where he fits best around the diamond, it’s hard to say anything about his approach at the plate other than that it’s quite, quite refined.

Congrats on the dinger, Josh, and here’s to hoping there’s a lot, lot more to come.

Honorable Mentions are due to: Luis Castillo, who was his usual excellent self (6 IP, 5H, ER, BB, 4 K); Eugenio Suarez, who singled twice, walked twice, and scored; Yasiel Puig, who doubled in a run and scored one himself; and Amir Garrett, who tossed a perfect inning of relief (with 2 K) in his return to the Reds.

Key Plays

  • It took until the Top of the 6th for someone to dent the scoreboard, and it was the Cardinals that did it. Matt Wieters turned around a 3-2 Castillo meatball, belting it well over the wall in right-center for a solo dinger. Reds trailed, 1-0.
  • Puig leveled things for the Reds in the Bottom of the 7th against Miles Mikolas, however. Suarez coaxed a leadoff walk, and Puig laced a laser of a double to the wall in left-center to plate Geno. That was far from the last of the damage, as Vanmeter later socked his first big league dinger, a 2-run shot over the bullpen beyond the RF wall to give the Reds a 3-1 advantage.
  • A walk by Harrison Bader haunted in the Top of the 8th, as he coaxed it off Michael Lorenzen prior to a fisted double down the LF line by Edman, and later scored on a Jose Martinez groundout to make it a 3-2 game.
  • Lorenzen locked things down in the Top of the 9th, and that’s exactly how things finished - with a 3-2 Reds victory.

Tony Graphanino

Source: FanGraphs

Other Notes

  • Prior to the game, the Reds welcomed back to the roster both Raisel Iglesias (paternity list) and Amir Garrett (10-day IL), instantly giving the bullpen a much-needed boost. To make room for the two, both Jimmy Herget and Matt Bowman were optioned back to AAA Louisville.
  • Sunday’s series finale will be a 1:10 PM ET start, and it’ll have Anthony DeSclafani on the mound for the Reds. Who the Cardinals will send to the mound to start is still yet to be determined, at least if MLB At-Bat is to be believed. Odds are, they’ll decide that it’s worth putting someone on the mound to pitch in lieu of forfeiting.
  • Y’know what? They did. It’s going to be Jack Flaherty, if tHom Brennaman of the FS-Ohio broadcast of tonight’s game is to be believed.
  • Tunes.