Titanic Struggle Recap

Game 74: This is What It Sounds Like When Jays Cry

Final R H E
Toronto Blue Jays (42-35)
3 7 1
Cincinnati Reds (37-37)
4 9 2
W:  Johnny Cueto (7-5)   L:  R.A. Dickey (6-6)   S:  A. Chapman (13)
Box Score | Stats | Depth Chart | FanGraphs Win Probability

The Good

Jay Bruce is heating up. His single quickly removed the zero from the scoreboard in the first inning. After falling behind, the Reds quickly came back in the bottom of the 4th with a Jay Bruce [him again] double, a Ryan Ludwick single, which would shortly result in a run scored when Brayan Pena hit into the classic 6-4-3 double play.

The Nation got a scare in the 5th inning when Johnny Cueto pulled up on the basepaths with what looked like a hammy, but turned out to be merely a cramp.

Let’s all take a moment to exhale.

Johnny finished with a line of 8.0 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K.  Cueto’s strikeout looking of Juan Francisco in the 8th on his 120th pitch of the game was an on-the-black thing of beauty.

Ryan Ludwick continued his Ponce de Leon-like resurgence, going 2-4 on the day.

Zack Cozart has hit safely in 14 of this last 15 games. Just so you know.

Aroldis Chapman struck out the side in the 9th. That change has revolutionized his arsenal to the chagrin of major league ballplayers everywhere.

A terrific 6-4-3 double play turned by the Reds in the top of the 3rd, halted the Blue Jays bats before they could really get going.

The Bad

Brandon Phillips left the game with what is reported to be a bruised heel. Enough with the injuries, Baseball gods.

The Ugly

Nothing.

Not so random thoughts …

Were it not for the unthinkable happenings of Friday night, this would have been a sweep against the second-best slugging team in the majors. This is significant. If the middle relief stabilizes, this team could go on a serious run and make everyone forget the first two months of 2014.

The Reds’ offense is bouncing back when they see adversity these days. After the Blue Jays took a 2-1 lead, the Club immediately answered. Another series win. Back to .500.  Back on the road again. Time to get over the hump.

The Daily Billy: T’was a day of rest for the future Rookie of the Year, who made a brief defensive appearance in the 9th.

My Knob Creek Player of the Game: Johnny Beisbol. Pitching, people. It’s what’s for dinner. Honorable mention to Todd Frazier, who hit his 17th HR of the season and played zen-like defense again.

Finally, there was this piece of pure poetry from a wise friend on Twitter:

tweet 06-22-14

And, that’s enough.

36 thoughts on “Game 74: This is What It Sounds Like When Jays Cry

  1. And all the sudden this is the Reds team that people were expecting. Keep this up and we will be playoff bound.

    • On a less positive note: heel bruises can hinder a player for quite some time, and BP’s replacements aren’t evidently a patch on him, though I certainly like Santiago’s D.

  2. Not too sure about the Schumaker thing, but other than that…good recap and a good game by the Reds to bounce back from Fridays bullpen debacle. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that by the all star break the Reds will be in a wild card spot and within 4 of the division lead.

  3. Does anybody have any idea what was going on with Price’s announcement last month that Ludwig “lost his job”? Since that time, I haven’t noticed any less playing time for him. (This isn’t a complaint: he’s played well since then). I’m wondering what this reveals about how a modern clubhouse works. Why would you need to do an official demotion, much less announce it to the press if it wasn’t as an explanation for a drastically reduced role?

    • Well it is like any baseball player. He started hitting hot, i think I remember the game he was like 2/3 with a single and a double. Than price put him in against and he went 1/4. Combine that with heisy has sucked, and shu only goes in there with bad machups, and it wasn’t a really easy job to lose.

      He has been our only choice, and you only see him in their .500 of the games. I am not complaining though.

    • I have him roughly not starting 14 games since May 18, that is not an every day OFer by my count. He lost that role which he had at the seasons beginning. He is playing like he wants it back.

    • Price said that Ludwick would not be the every day starter in LF for the time being, and he hasn’t been,

  4. Zack Cozart’s season totals kind of illustrates how long it takes to work out a 1-29 start. Looking it up since that horrible start, the guy is 57/216 .264.

    Same thing with Billy Hamiltons 2-22 start. He has hit 65-223 at a .291 clip since that bad first week or so.

  5. Cards announced today that both Wacha and Garcia will be out indefinitely with shoulder ills.
    No doubt this could significantly impact the NL Central race.

    • Well that is good news for us. A bit unfortunate that this has happened to such young arms but each team has their own diversities to overcome. I am hopeful that all of ours was at the beginning of the season so we can be strong and healthy going into September.

      • Heck, they probably have three Cy Young candidates buried in the minors no one has heard of.

      • Yes, Garcia has so much promise and it is a shame he hasn’t been able to stay healthy. Look, I can’t stand the Cards but it stinks anytime a good player gets injured. I like good ball-players, even when I hate them playing against the Reds sometimes. Garcia’s injury is unfortunate, even if it favors the Reds’ chances in the division…. Like Preach said though, I wonder who they have just waiting in the wings?

  6. Cards been winning with pitching, they are not hitting like last year at all. I wouldn’t doubt they could make a trade and get someone decent, if they are going to be short.

  7. The Cards have been linked with Price and Syzmardja( spelling). Seems that they may have known what was coming. Let us hope they cannot get either or both. Both the Rays and Cubs could benefit from some of the players the Cards might have available.

    • Samardzija (spelling correct) is also linked to the Giants, Royals and Angels. Take your pick.

    • Said it before but I’ll say it again. As long as LF has been a black hole for the Reds how did it never occur to anybody to send EE out there to shag fly balls. The other thing I would add is that by all accounts and what a person could see on the telecast he appears to be “good people”. It was pretty clear he had a number of friends and well wishers in the Reds dougout, unlike another certain ex-Red in town this weekend.

      • Trying EE in LF ? That’s the benefit of hindsight. No one complained when EE was traded (the complaints were about the 2 pitching prospects). He was batting .209/.333/.374. Later he was DFA’d by the Jays and not one of the other 29 teams was interested. So all 30 teams were equally stupid.

        • PS Having watched EE play 3rd base and now 1st base, I doubt he could play LF. He was never able to throw with accuracy and as of now he’s a sluggish first baseman.

  8. On the down side the Reds are 7-3 in their last 10 games (8-3 over 11) and have actually lost a game to the division lead by my accounting and just tread water to the Cards in 2nd. At one game past half way of their road schedule, the Brewers are 27-15; that’s going to be hard to make up/ cover if they even play .500 the rest of the way on the road. At home they are 20-15 thru 35 and could well improve on this mark.

    I’d thought all along that it would be easier for the Reds to out together a run to win the division than to get by all the other contenders for a WC spot. However the way it is looking now maybe not. They’ve gotten themselves to 4th in the WC and thus need to make up only 3 games on 2 teams for a wild card.

  9. We still have a bunch of games left w Brew City! Just keep winning series and everything else will play out and we will see what happens. Control your own destiny and let the chips fall as they may. Great comeback series win after Friday’s debacle!!!!

  10. For the 3rd time Cueto gets burned by multiple errors (this time one was his of course) and multiple unearned runs. But this time he triumphs. Another superb outing.

    • I just want t opoint out that the bunt that Cueto was charged an error on really shouldn’t have even been close. Votto had his foot on the very back corner of the back and didn’t even stretch out to get the throw. Watch the play again and tell me if Votto hadn’t moved to the front of the bag and stretched even just a little, Bautista is out, easily.

    • Most 1st basemen don’t stretch on plays like that with throws coming from near the plate. The percentage of throws that are high or up the line are increased for some reason. Probably due to the throwers trying not to hit the runner.

      If I recall, players are actually taught to stand wide from the base to give the person throwing a “good target,” rather than stretching towards them and giving them a cramped target with the runner very close.

      With that said, I agree. It looked like a stretch from Votto gets Bautista.

  11. I’ll add one bad/ugly to the recap – Brandon Phillips absolutely, positively, under no circumstances can get thrown out at third for the final out of an inning by 15 feet. It shouldn’t happen even if it’s a close play! There’s no excuse for it and no good reason for it. It’s a TOOTBLAN of the highest order. Of course, Ludwick leads off the next inning with a knock that (in theory) would have easily scored Phillips from second.

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