The Cincinnati Reds didn’t get the best out of Graham Ashcraft on Friday evening against the Pittsburgh Pirates, but the big righty grinded through 5.0 IP of 2 ER ball to keep them in a game they, at one point, tied up at 2-2.
Alas, a late 2-out error by Jose Barrero that allowed a third Pirate run and a subsequent insurance run in the Bottom of the 7th off Ian Gibaut gave Pittsburgh all the offense they would need on a day the Cincinnati bats mostly fell silent once again.
Nick Senzel sliced an RBI-single into RF, which was cool. Tyler Stephenson socked a long single off the outfield wall, which was similarly cool. TJ Friedl, tonight’s Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game, singled and rifled home a perfect throw from LF to nail a Pirate runner at the plate and keep the game moderately closer - also, quite cool.
In the end, however, it was another loss. This one went into the books at 4-2, Pittsburgh.
[Link to interactive FanGraphs WPA chart & box score]
- Seeing as it was a defensive error that gave the Pirates the go-ahead run in the 6th, I’ll reheat this from earlier today - while the team’s pitching staff sports a terribly high BABIP, their defense has also been the worst in all of baseball by UZR/150 entering play today.
- As for the putrid offense, the Reds entered play today with the fewest road homers (2) of any team in baseball. They also ranked dead last in both ISO (.085) and SLG (.316). Safe to say they’ll hold on to those leads when play begins tomorrow.
- The Reds will attempt to salvage a series split beginning with Saturday’s game. It’ll be Luis Cessa with that task fresh off being thumped repeatedly in his previous outing, and the Reds offense will be up against the indefatigable Rich Hill. First pitch is set for 6:35 PM ET in that one, as well.