If you haven’t been paying attention, the Cincinnati Reds have been doing a lot of losing lately. How you want to define “lately” is up to you, because that term can stretch pretty far when you’re talking about this franchise. In it’s most immediate past, the Reds have now lost 8 of their last 10 games after their walk-off defeat to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Tonight’s game started off well enough. Graham Ashcraft was cruising and had a comfortable 3-run lead thanks to home runs from Nick Senzel and TJ Friedl. Things fell apart in the 7th inning, though. Holding a 3-1 lead going into the inning, Pittsburgh was able to tie the game after a couple of infield hits and a couple of not-so infield hits. That chased Ashcraft from the game and left it up to the bullpen the rest of the way, and we all knew how that would go. Ashcraft continues to give the Reds exactly what they need, as he’s been one of their more consistent and efficient starters this season. He finished with a line of: 6.2 innings pitched, 9 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk, and 8 strikeouts. Those 8 strikeouts tied a career high. Well done.
The Reds were able to take the lead back in the top of the 8th, as Kyle Farmer came through with 2 outs and 2 on to put the Reds up 4-3. But unfortunately, the bullpen. After Joel Kuhnel ran into trouble and gave up the tying run, Ross Detweiler faced 3 batters and all 3 batters reached. After an intentional walk and hit by pitch would load the bases, Michael Chavis singled down the line in left to give the Pirates the win.
Don’t worry, you guys. The Reds are back at it again on Saturday night, if you’re into that sort of thing. Justin Dunn (0-1, 8.64 ERA) will face off against Tyler Beede (1-2, 3.72 ERA) to break the tie for last in the NL Central. Go Reds.