Joey Votto, as it turns out, still bangs. It’s no doubt that he has struggled in his 16th season, but he has now homered in 2 of 3 games and reached base twice again this afternoon in the Cincinnati Reds’ win over the St. Louis Cardinals. his 3-run home run in the bottom of the 3rd inning turned out to be the difference in today’s game, and that’s enough to earn him today’s Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game.
Today also saw the return of Tyler Mahle, which was a welcome sight in a season full of injuries for the Reds this year. He cruised through his first 3 innings and entered the 4th inning with a 4-run lead, thanks to the aforementioned Votto. He finished with a line of: 6 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 5 K.
The game was scoreless through the first 2 innings until the Reds put a big ol’ crooked number on the scoreboard in the bottom of the 3rd. Nick Senzel led off with a single and Tyler Naquin and Brandon Drury followed with singles of their own to load the bases. After a Tyler Pham sacrifice fly would score Senzel to make it a 1-0 ball game, Joey would launch a fly ball over the wall in left-center to make it 4-0. Walks would haunt Tyler Mahle in the top of the 4th, as a lead off walk and subsequent home run by Paul Goldschmidt cut the lead in half.
It didn’t take long for the Reds to get those runs back, as they would add a couple more in the bottom of the 4th. Mike Moustakas led off with a walk and then moved to 3rd on a single by Matt Reynolds. After a couple outs, Tyler Naquin would single to center to score Moustakas and move Reynolds to 3rd. The Reds would then halfway pull off a double steal, as Tyler Naquin was able to get himself caught up in a rundown long enough for Reynolds to take home and give the Reds a 6-2 lead. A 6th inning home run by Goldschmidt would be all the Cardinals could muster the rest of the way, and the bullpen threw 3 shut down innings to give the Reds a 6-3 victory.
The Reds continue their home stand tomorrow as they welcome the Miami Marlins to town. Nick Lodolo (2-3, 5.31 ERA) gets the start for the Reds and he’ll face off against Trevor Rogers (4-9, 5.46 ERA). First pitch is at 6:40 PM EDT. Go Reds.