|W: Ranaudo (2-0) L: Leake (9-11)|
|FanGraphs Win Probability | The Worldwide Leader’s Box Score | Game Photos|
It’s always something. On a day when the Reds bullpen throws four shutout innings and the Terrible Reds Offense™ managed four runs, the Reds starting pitching gives up five. Another one run loss. The Reds were swept in the four-game season series by the last-place Red Sox. At least we made fun of their name.
Skip Schumaker and Zack Cozart led off the ninth inning with base hits. Then Ramon Santiago was sent up to – of course – bunt. You can make a case for bunting in that situation, with the Reds just needing a run to tie the game and two to win. But after Santiago failed to get the bunt down in his first two attempts, he was still bunting on an 0-2 count. The odds at that point have swung massively in favor of the other side. Santiago’s foul bunt strike three was a devastating blow to the inning. Bad on Santiago for failing to get the bunt down. Bad on Bryan Price for leaving the bunt on with an 0-2 count. Billy Hamilton followed with a *first-pitch* soft fly to centerfield (Billy, a walk there really, really, really helps). Kristopher Negron grounded to the pitcher for the final out.
Skip Schumaker had three hits including a long home run to right field. Mike Leake also homered.
Todd Frazier drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. He was robbed of another RBI by his double to deep center bouncing over the fence. The two-bagger was only the fourth extra-base hit for Frazier in over 100 plate appearances since the All Star break.
Kristopher Negron made an outstanding defensive play in the seventh inning, catching Dustin Pedroia’s pop-up against the stadium wall. In his limited opportunity, Negron has made a positive impression filling in for Brandon Phillips. He was 2-for-3 today with a walk. He plays 2B, 3B and the outfield, including centerfield. Standard sample size caveats apply.
Billy Hamilton made a nice running catch on a ball that Dan Butler hit to deep left center field. That’s the one part of Hamilton’s game that has remained major league. He’s hit .198/.221/.275 in 96 plate appearances *leading off* since the All Star break not counting today’s 0-for-5. His OBP overall has fallen to .295. Hamilton’s throwing accuracy has been inconsistent. His errant throw from short center in the first inning, missing home plate and the cut-off man, contributed to a Red Sox run.
Aroldis Chapman was rusty. If only there had been other opportunities to use him recently. Bryan Price double-switched for Ryan Ludwick so that Chapman could pitch two innings. So that Chapman could pitch two innings. So that Chapman could …
Sigh. We’ll get ’em tomorrow in Colorado.
Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.