The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
There were probably guys better tonight, but nobody did more in this game than Michael Lorenzen, who got the start in centerfield before relieving Robert Stephenson, pitching two scoreless frames, and batting in the game winning run. Then he went back out to CF to finish the game (where he watched Raisel Iglesias cough up a walk off dinger).
Lorenzen’s usage is super interesting at the end of this season, as new rules will go into place next season designating guys who can be two way players. I’m not really convinced that Lorenzen can ever be a consistent threat at the plate, but nobody can deny his athleticism and aptitude in the outfield, so building up his workload like this is probably pretty smart by David Bell and the Reds.
Honorable mention to Jose Peraza, who hit twice and manufactured the game’s first run all on his own. Phillip Ervin batted in two and walked, while Aristides Aquino doubled and walked.
- To get things started, Jose Peraza led off the game with a double. Then, channelling his inner Billy Hamilton, stole third base before coming around to score on a throwing error. Phil Ervin then walked before Eugenio Suarez struck out for the first out. Aristides Aquino doubled to put Reds at second and third. Jose Iglesias grounded out, but scored Ervin. Reds lead, 2-0.
- The Reds got two more in the fifth, after Alex Blandino walked and Peraza singled, both scored on single from Ervin. Reds, 4-0.
- The Pirates would nearly come all the way back after Kevin Newman blasted a three run dong with no outs in the bottom of the frame. Reds up, 4-3.
- Kevin Kramer and Jacob Stallings singles in the bottom of the sixth chased Disco for Robert Stephenson. Stephenson induced a flyout to Jake Elmore that moved Kramer to third, and then Kramer scored on a lineout to Peraza at second. Peraza’s throw was a little low to VanMeter at first, causing the ball to squirt away a bit, allowing Kramer to score. Tied at 4.
- After an Iglesias single and Curt Casali walk, Michael Lorenzen, starting center fielder and, at this point, current relief pitcher, singled to score Iglesias and put the Reds on top. Reds, 5-4 middle 8.
- Kevin Newman hit a walk off, two run dinger off Raisel Iglesias in the bottom of the ninth. Pirates win, 5-4.
- Never, never easy for these Reds.
- Disco has had better nights, but he was still reasonably fine tonight and finished up arguably his best season since his rookie year. It was certainly his longest season since his rookie year, as his 166.2 IP ranks second in his career (184.2 back in 2018). He was absolutely brilliant in 2016, working with a 3.28 ERA and 130 ERA+, but he only managed 123.1 IP in that season before missing all of the 2017 campaign. He very much appears to be back.
- Somehow, some way, Clint Hurdle is going to return for his 10th season at the helm of the Pirates. I really have no idea what it takes to get fired from that position at this point. The Pirates have been terrible this season (and that says something coming from a Reds blogging nerb) and the team has frayed at the seams (multiple reports of fights and complaints in the clubhouse) and Clint Hurdle is suspect number one when it comes to the Pirates having beef with literally every team in the NL Central due to their bush league bean ball policy. Get this guy the fuck outta here.
- The Reds and Pirates will play the penultimate game of the season tomorrow night, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM EDT. You probably have better things to do on a Saturday night. I, however, do not. Which says a lot about my life, huh? I’ll be here to bring you all of the action.