W: J.J. Hoover (1-5)
L: K. McClellan (0-1)
S: A. Chapman (20)
–Boy, where do we start? How about with Mike Leake who pitched eight innings of one run baseball (though he only got credit for seven as, for some reason, they made him pitch the third inning twice). Leake really ought to be going to the All-Star game. His ERA stands at 2.52 right not.
–The Reds scored six runs today, which is, I believe, the most they’ve scored since 1995.
–Among the offensive contributors were Shin-Soo Choo, who reached base five times (including a lead-off homer); Joey Votto, who reached base three times, and Devin Mesoraco who hit the game winning home run.
–One more just for Devin.
–The Bullpen was lights out tonight, though Manny Parra scared the bejesus out of all of us.
–During the third inning, the Reds committed three errors (two by Votto). That hadn’t happened since 2006. It was ugly, but also the only low point of the game. Of course, if they’d gotten it done in the field that inning, the game would have been over at the end of regulation.
NOT SO RANSOM THOUGHTS
–I know people have been griping about the Reds hitting with RISP. Generally, I don’t see much point, as over time, teams hit the same with RISP as they do without (feel free to look it up if you don’t believe me). But they had certainly been in an awful drought lately. Tonight, the Reds were 3-12, which is a .250 batting average. As a team they are hitting .248.
–There is always the chance I could be wrong, and I don’t officially believe in momentum anyway, but this felt like the kind of game that turns a team around. They got the hits they needed. Except for the hiccup in the third, they played a quality game and beat a high-quality team. They have Latos going tomorrow and suddenly look poised to win the series, and then the schedule eases up. I could certainly see them going on a run heading into the All-Star break.
–I am not impervious to dejection, as I think you saw last night, but this is a good baseball team, and they showed it tonight. I’m excited to see where the Reds go from here and I’ll be pulling hard for them to pass back the Pirates and the Cardinals. Tonight marked the halfway point for the Reds and if they double what they’ve done to this point, they’ll finish 92-70. That would get them in the playoffs, I’m almost certain. Time for the second half. Let’s go.
Jason has been a fan of the Reds since he was born. He really had no choice in the matter. He has been writing at Redleg Nation for a few years, and also writes and edits at The Hardball Times. His debut novel, When the Sparrow Sings, is available now and concerns baseball, among other things. You can find more information at jasonlinden.com.