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Bullpen, defensive miscues doom Reds in 7-6 walk-off loss to Royals

That stunk.

Milwaukee Brewers v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Luis Castillo got off to a completely abysmal start to his 2021 campaign. So far in his career, running into a multi-start blip is something he’s made a habit of doing for parts of seasons, though he’s pretty much always been able to eventually flip the switch and turn back into the elite dynamo he can be.

On Tuesday, he continued to do just that for the Cincinnati Reds, firing 7 IP of 1 ER ball against the Kansas City Royals, yielding just 3 H and a lone BB against 4 K in a brilliant 99 pitch outing. That continues his turnaround, and he’s once again looking like the resident ace we’ve seen more often than not with an ERA of an even 2.00 over his last 7 starts.

Unfortunately, a late defensive miscue by Eugenio Suarez and a bullpen that simply couldn’t get the big outs doomed this, and the win streak.

Honorable Mentions are due to: Kyle Farmer, who socked a 2-run tater and came a triple shy of the cycle; Joey Votto, who tripled, donked in a pair of runs, and added a walk; and rookies Jonathan India and Tyler Stephenson, who combined to go 4 for 6 with a double, walk, ribbie, and run scored.

Key Plays

  • The Reds finally dented the scoreboard in the Top of the 3rd, and ended up pushing a trio of runs across in that frame. The initial run came on India’s double off the CF wall that plated Shogo Akiyama, and Votto later poked his triple down the LF line to score another pair. Reds led, 3-0.
  • Farmer played add-on in the Top of the 4th, his 2-run tater into the LF seats putting the Reds ahead, 5-0.
  • Michael A. Taylor swatted a solo blast off Castillo to open the Bottom of the 5th, putting the Royals on the board - albeit in a 5-1 hole.
  • The Reds got that run back in the Top of the 7th, however. Nick Castellanos socked a double into CF because Nick Castellanos socks doubles all over the damn place, and he later scored on a Suarez single to make it a 6-1 game.
  • Hanser Alberto K’d against Cionel Perez to begin the Bottom of the 7th, but made it to 1B as the ball skipped away from catcher Tyler Stephenson for a wild pitch. That put runners on for Andrew Benintendi’s tater, making it a 6-3 game.
  • Brad Brach helped evade further damage in the Bottom of the 8th, but fell flat in his attempt to slam the door in the Bottom of the 9th. A walk and HBP began the inning, while Michael A. Taylor later reached on an error by Suarez at 3B that coulda/shoulda been a double play ball and instead allowed a run to score and put runners on the 2B & 3B with none out. Heath Hembree was summoned and later surrendered a jam-shot double into LF to Nicky Lopez that scored a pair to tie the game, and the throw home by Aristides Aquino airmailed home to put the game’s winning run at 3B with just 1-out. Later, Amir Garrett was trying his best to escape the jam, but a blast off the wall in LF by Salvador Perez gave KC the 7-6 walk-off win.

Tony Graphanino

Source: FanGraphs

Other Notes

  • That sucked.
  • Good lord, did I have a lot of deleting to do here.
  • Tomorrow’s series finale between these two will be a matinee affair, with first pitch slated for 2:10 PM ET. Sonny Gray will toe the rubber for Cincinnati, while former 1st round pick Brady Singer will try to stop them as the Royals starter for the day.
  • Tunes.