High altitude seemed to agree with Reds hitters. 17 hits by 10 different batters.
Not-so-Great Expectations Dan Straily gave up five runs in six innings. Normally, we’d agree that was a terrible start. Especially when it’s the pitcher on the staff who has been the best for the club, as Straily has been. He surrendered a home run on the second pitch of the game. Straily walked three and struck out only four, which is bleh. And, of course, if the offense hadn’t provided a load of runs, we’d look at the start completely different. But low expectations are powerful. We’ve become conditioned. Leading the league in walks and home runs surrendered, double-digit ERAs, one bad start followed by the next have left us numb to accurate evaluation. Left us believing the mirage that a start of five runs in six innings might have been good. Drink up, Nation.
Wallet Found? Joey Votto smashed a bases-loaded double to centerfield with the score tied 5-5. If the ball hadn’t bounced over the fence, it would have cleared the bases. If the wind hadn’t been blowing directly in from center, it would have been a grand slam. A couple innings later, Votto pulled an inside pitch over the right field fence for his 200th home run as a Cincinnati Red.
Other Offense Votto wasn’t the only Reds player with a productive day at the plate. Zack Cozart hit the first pitch of the game for his sixth home run of the year. He added two more hits. Adam Duvall hit two more home runs and Eugenio Suarez added one of his own. Billy Hamilton had three hits.
Bullpen Artists Blake Wood pitched the seventh inning. He walked the first batter he faced, of course. He also gave up a hit and another walk. But in the end he worked out of the jam without giving up a run. Dan Ohlendorf retired the side in order in the eighth. Tony Cingrani, asked to protect a six-run lead in the ninth, he of course, walked the first batter. Then he gave up a home run to Carlos Gonzalez. Then he walked another batter. Cingrani got a couple outs then gave up another run-scoring hit. Just terrible. J.C. Ramirez came in to get the final out.
DeSclafani Update Jason Linden watched Anthony DeSclafani start for Louisville today and got to talk to the pitcher after the game. We would again like to thank the Louisville Bats (and Dayton Dragons) for treating our writers well. Read Jason’s scouting report here. Warning: Prepare for good news.
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.