The Reds win tonight makes them 6-2 in the eight games since the All-Star break They’ve won all three series and look for a sweep tomorrow against Arizona. If they continue winning at a .750 clip they would finish 2016 with 85 wins! You know who else was 6-2 after the ASG? The 1976 Cincinnati Reds. Pinch me.
/working on petition to submit to MLB that Reds play only Atlanta, Arizona and Milwaukee the rest of the year, interleague games against Minnesota/
Key Performance Keyvius Sampson made the most of his spot start. He gave up four hits and two walks in 4.1 innings, striking out six. It’s worth remembering that Sampson is just 25 years old and a couple years ago was one of the top prospects in the Padres minor league system. He’s pitched well in AAA this season.
Unearned Runs The Reds scored three unearned runs in the first inning. Billy Hamilton singled and Joey Votto walked. After a bit of base running, they both scored on a two-out throwing error by the Diamondbacks’ third baseman. Brandon Phillips followed up with a double, scoring Adam Duvall. Votto’s batting average is up to .275 and his on-base percentage is .410. He’s producing runs 37 percent above league average and that includes the first two months of the season.
Way Earned Runs Jay Bruce added a 3-run homer in the third inning, knocking in Zack Cozart, who had two hits and Votto. Bruce missed a second home run by three inches in the fifth inning. It was Bruce’s 20th homer of the year, his eighth time accomplishing that feat. Only Johnny Bench (11) and Frank Robinson (10) have done that more for the Reds. Solid company.
Dominant Michael Lorenzen relieved Sampson and retired all eight batters he faced, mostly with a well located 95+ mph fastball. He hit 97 and 98 on the radar gun. Two strikeouts.
Adieuuuuuuuuuuuce The Reds play out of town all next week, so if Bruce is traded before the August 1 deadline, tomorrow will be his final game at Great American Ball Park playing in a Reds uniform. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to be there to watch. He’s played in 250 more games for the Reds than did Ken Griffey Jr. Sad day.
Rotation Planning Homer Bailey takes the mound Monday for Louisville. If that’s his final rehab start, Bailey could pitch for the Reds next weekend in San Diego. Robert Stephenson pitched for the Bats tonight, giving up 3 hits and zero walks in six innings. Stephenson struck out seven.
Robert Stephenson could pitch Friday in San Diego taking Sampson’s spot and Homer Bailey could follow up on Saturday night. Brandon Finnegan pitches the Arizona series finale tomorrow. He’s the guy staring down an innings limit. The Reds could skip his next turn, add Stephenson and Bailey and bump everyone else back a day.