A minor league pitcher named Deck calling off a bunch of major league position players from fielding a pop-up, only to drop it, is an apt summary of the Reds performance tonight.
Also that the same Deck was the Reds best pitcher.
No trouble tonight telling which team was still in contention and which one wasn’t.
Spoiling the Cardinals season will have to wait until tomorrow. Meanwhile, St. Louis has turned over a huge portion of the lineup and are still in contention.
Robert Stephenson, making his 8th start for the Reds, gave up more than 3 earned runs for the first time since July 22. Stephenson (24) walked three batters (all of whom scored) and gave up a bunch of hard-hit balls. He did strike out 5 in his 3 innings of pitching. The Cardinals got two unearned runs in the 1st, after a Zack Cozart throwing error. Nick Carrington has it right:
Alejandro Chacin (24) relieved Stephenson in the 4th. Rookie Davis (24) pitched the 5th and 6th – remember that Davis was in the starting rotation on Opening Day. Ariel Hernandez (25) pitched the 7th. None of them pitched well. Hernandez was a particular disaster. He walked four batters while only getting one out. Hernandez has walked 17 batters in 17.2 innings.
Deck McGuire (28), who was called up today, came in after Hernandez in the 7th. It was McGuire’s major league debut. He signed a minor league free agent contract with the Reds during the offseason. He spent 2017 starting for AA-Pensacola. The Reds are his fifth organization. Last year he pitched in the Cardinals organization. On McGuire’s fifth pitch, he induced an inning-ending double play. He came back and pitched the 8th. McGuire didn’t give up a run.
Zack Cozart turned a 91-mph Lance Lynn fastball around for a 433-foot home run in the 1st inning. It was Cozart’s 20th and the first time in Cincinnati Reds franchise history that six players have hit 20+ homers in a season. Hitting for power has been the key to the Reds improved offense this season.
Scott Schebler had two doubles. Adam Duvall had two hits.
Scooter Gennett, now the Reds clean-up hitter, left the game in the 4th inning due to “left hand inflammation.”
Jesse Winker started in RF and hit first. He went 1-for-4.
The Cardinals drew 9 walks. The Reds drew none.