Today is the 10th anniversary of Joey Votto’s major league debut. For six innings I was convinced — and there was nothing you could have said to change my mind — that the two teams had agreed that as a tribute to Votto, the only permissible RBIs in today’s game would be on bases-loaded walks.
Homer Bailey, making his first September start since 2013, was dominant for the first 6 innings. Between the 2nd and 6th innings, he retired 14 consecutive batters, breaking a lot of Brewers bats. Added with his previous game, Bailey threw 11 shutout innings in a row. Bailey struck out four and didn’t walk anyone. He only reached a 3-ball count on a handful of hitters. Bailey’s fastball was 94-95 mph much of the day, hitting 96 mph once.
Bailey ran out of gas in the 7th inning, giving up a leadoff home run to Ryan Braun then two more singles before being lifted.
Homer Bailey has started 14 games this season. He’s had some really bad ones. But in 7 of those starts he’s given up 2 or fewer earned runs. He gave up three today, although two scored on home run after he’d been removed.
Bailey even contributed on offense, with a single on the 10th pitch of his at bat in the 3rd inning. He came around to score on a bases-loaded walk by JoeyMVP, scoring the first run of the game.
Bryan Price brought Michael Lorenzen to relieve Bailey with two runners on and no outs in the 7th inning. Lorenzen retired the first two batters before giving up a game-tying 3-run homer.
Kevin Shackleford worked around two singles, including starting a nifty 1-6-3 double play, in pitching the 8th. Raisel Iglesias retired the side in order in the 9th. His last pitch was a 100-mph fastball to strike out Stephen Vogt.
Billy Hamilton drove a 95-mph fastball into the left field bleachers for a wonderful, if extremely unlikely, walk-off home run in the 9th inning. Tucker Barnhart blasted a bases-loaded double in the 6th to drive in a pair of runs, making the score 4-0.
The Reds turned in a couple nice defensive plays. Hamilton and Barnhart teamed up for the third out of the 1st inning, with Hamilton gunning down Neil Walker at the plate. Barnhart made a deep tag on the hop. In the 2nd inning, Scooter Gennett made a nice play on a broken-bat flare into right field, fielding the ball over his shoulder.
Home runs. Home runs. Power. Home runs. I’m looking forward to a day when Reds employees who are in charge of things quit talking about building offense around creating panic/chaos with speed. Don’t they watch any games?
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.