Nick Lodolo and Jose Barrero have long found themselves racing with Hunter Greene to the top of the Cincinnati Reds prospect lists, with all such folks who rank those things pretty well torn on which would be the best of the bunch. On Wednesday, the Reds got a healthy dose of awesome from each of Nick and Jose, and it led to a hard-fought 1-0 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies to salvage a game from the home series.
Lodolo was, quite frankly, brilliant. He scattered 5 H and a pair of walks in his 7.0 IP, and struck out 8 Phillies in his dominant 98 pitch day. His mix of a 95 mph heater located precisely on the corners set up his wicked, sweeping breaking pitch, and he had the Phils off-keel all afternoon. He later gave way to Alexis Diaz, another rookie, who fired a pair of perfect innings of relief as the Reds held Philadelphia completely off the board.
Of course, it would still require a run to win a shutout, and Ranger Suarez opted against yielding such a thing his 7.0 brilliant innings of his own. It wasn’t until Seranthony Dominguez took over for the Bottom of the 9th that the Reds finally managed to get their offense to work.
A leadoff walk ended up haunting, as it so often does, as Albert Almora, Jr. coaxed one. A single by Alejo Lopez put a runner in scoring position for Barrero, who smacked a walk-off single into CF to give the Reds their win.
A good day all around, really, if you squint and ignore the mostly anemic offense. Joey Votto’s own slumping self got the day off to work on getting himself correct, with tomorrow’s scheduled off-day giving him plenty of time to ponder his baseballing existence.
The Reds will return to action on Friday in Pittsburgh in The Battle For Last in the Central, and will surely do so in front of five or seven fans. First pitch in that one is slated for 7:05 PM ET, with Graham Ashcraft going toe to toe opposite vaunted Pirates starter TBD.
Go Reds. Go Jose. Go Nick.