The Cincinnati Reds (51-58) ran their way out of a win and walked right into an extra-inning 5-4 loss to the Atlanta Braves (66-46) at SunTrust Park, Saturday night.

With runners on second and third, one out, in the ninth inning, and the Reds down a run, Tucker Barnhart hit a pop fly right into the hole in short left field that landed for a hit. Despite the ball being within easy distance of a throw home, third base coach JR House decided to send Jesse Winker, from second base. Winker, representing the go-ahead run, was promptly gunned down. The Reds did not score again.

On the other side of the ball, the Reds walked nine Braves hitters. Atlanta did not record a hit, from the fifth inning until the walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th by Ronald Acuna Jr. The tag-team of Amir Garrett and Michael Lorenzen walked four Braves, in the bottom of the eighth, to give them a 4-3 lead. Then, in the bottom of the tenth, Jared Hughes walked two, while recording just one out. With a runner on third, and two outs, Hughes’ replacement, Robert Stephenson, gave up a walk-off single to Acuna, down the third base line.

Trevor Bauer’s debut wasn’t quite what was hoped for. He held the Braves to three runs, but he only pitched 4.2 innings (threw 107 pitches) and constantly battled through jam after jam. Sticking with the walk theme, he issued three of those, and added seven hits to that ledger, which more than drowned out the four strikeouts he recorded.

He did show his stuff, bending an impressive breaker multiple times.

In all, his debut was reminiscent of Sonny Gray’s debut with the Reds. He just looked like he was trying to overthrow everything, especially early on, and the results were mixed because of it.

One bright side was the fact that Aristides Aquino finally got his first hit. He also got, as I predicted, his first major league home run. His dinger came at a very good time as the Reds were doing absolutely nothing, thanks to Dallas Keuchel, and his long ball was of the three-run variety, which tied the game at the time.

Other than that, all I remember is walks, walks, walks, walks…

The Reds will try to salvage the series tomorrow, with Gray on the mound. The Braves will send Julio Teheran out to start the game.

38 Responses

  1. Klugo

    BobSteve was afraid to throw his fastball.0-2, he shoulda thrown one up and maybe outta the zone before trying the slider again. Probably wouldntve mattered though. Our best chance to win was in regulation.

    • Sliotar

      The Reds ran out of position players and had Iglesias “batting” (in the batter’s box, at least) for himself in 10th.

      IMO, absolutely fair to wonder if Bell’s actions in the Pirates brawl, coming back out after being ejected, had an impact on tonight’s game.

      Hurdle only got 2 games. Had Bell stayed off the field, and got same number of games, he would have been back managing tonight.

      • Hanawi

        Bell’s been just as bad with the double switches this year. Double switching in the 6th and 7th innings of a tied game can’t be normal strategy.

      • Steven Ross

        To be honest, I don’t miss Bell in the dugout at all.

  2. Wayne nabors

    Is j.r house really that bad,and if he is Why is he the 3rd base coach

  3. Eric B

    These close ones the Reds can’t seem to pull out are so disappointing. True you can’t give up 6 walks especially lead off walks in these late innings much less 2 in a row. Twice those walks scored, only one of TBs scored early on as he continually pitched out of jams. He has got to pitch deeper into these games though because they have next to nothing coming out of the back end of the pen. They have got to address this before 2020 season. Not going to win many games when 1, 2 and 4 hitters go a combined 0 for 13. Aquino lifted my spirit greatly only to be let down once again. Stephenson hit his spot Akuno got lucky, we did not.

  4. Great RedLegs Fan

    It’s clear Reds bullpen is made out of three men: Garrett, Lorenzen & Iglesias, so that’s another FO’s offseason duty.

  5. Great Redlegs Fan

    Good for Aquino, finally coming around to show his power in the bigs. Let’s see what the young guns (VanMeter, Aquino, Winker & Ervin) are capable of in the long run.

    • Pete

      No kidding, Aquino’s 8th PA this year I thought he would never hit a homer. Seriously? Happy we waited. Hopefully we can get something for Bauer in trade, it’s a horrible deal.

      Yeah this was a hard game to lose but a game we had no right to even be in, let’s try to regroup and pick up a W today..

      • Pete

        Sorry Green, everything in the first paragraph was sarcasm. I’m as high on Bauer today as yesterday. Also, for AA to hit a HR in his 8th PA is marvelous. These were in response to another comment.

      • Mason Red

        Green I think Pete’s sarcasm about TB was directed at me and others who had/have concerns about the trade. I have posted my concerns but also stated that it’s always possible a change in scenery can jumpstart or turnaround a career. You’re right about 4 innings not being enough to judge TB or the trade and he will get plenty of opportunities to prove himself. Hopefully it will be positive.

      • Pete

        Mason, It was directed to the comment right above mine. I realize some of you guys are frustrated with the trade but if we give it some time I think it’ll work out for everyone.

      • Mason Red

        I’m not frustrated at all with the trade. It’s possible to critique without emotion including frustration. The Reds traded a player they didn’t want for a player the Indians didn’t want. Both players involved have a history which isn’t opinion but is fact. You fail to recognize that I have stated that I hope the trade works out for the Reds. I do have concerns based on the trading history of the Reds in recent years which again is fact not opinion. Without question that has caused frustration as has years of losing.

  6. ToBeDetermined

    Didn’t really deserve to win this one.
    Toooo mannny waaalllkkkks

    • Pete

      If the Braves would have lost this game, their fans would be saying the world is coming to an end. For us? It would have been great if Tucker’s blooper carried the day after all the base runners and missed opportunities in the first five innings the Braves had.

      Braves are the second best time in the NL by a wide margin and aren’t going to make it a habit to beat themselves. Great thing is Sonny is starting today and we have a very good chance for a split.

  7. Hotto4Votto

    Happy to see a good game for Aquino. Nice to get that first hit, then the first HR out of the way. Walks will haunt. I flipped the game off once Lorenzen walked a guy in. Let the guy hit it where he will, never walk in a run.

  8. Roger Garrett

    Well played game on Friday and not good at all last night.Sending Winker was a little league decision hoping for a little league throw.That cost the Reds the game when it looked like they were going to steal one.The 3 run bomb was great but the walk and single are even more encouraging.May have found something in the big guy and JVM just have to let them play.Time to scrap the all righty lineup and the extra pitcher that never pitches.Peraza I repeat should only play short if he starts a game and I am good with losing as long as we play young guys the rest of the day.

    • Pete

      Not to mention the younger guys are our best players. I have a bad feeling Aquino will be out of the line up today and we see DD in his place. Hope I’m wrong but it’s the team’s MO, right or wrong.

      • Pete

        As predicted:
        Winker – rf
        Votto -1b
        Suarez – 3b
        VanMeter – lf
        Senzel – 3b
        Dietrich – 2b
        Iglesias – ss
        Branhart – c
        Gray – p

  9. RojoBenjy

    Heartfelt thoughts and prayers for RLN in Dayton who may have been affected by this morning’s tragedy.

    Suddenly the Reds losing doesn’t seem so bad after all.

    • Pete

      Just read about this and share your sentiments. I see where the Dragons cancelled their game, understandably.

  10. Steven Ross

    A game the Reds had to win. Rally from down 3-0 then tie it in the 9th at 4 is one you just can’t let slip away. Let’s see, started the season 7 games under .500 and as of August 4th, still 7 games under .500! It’s mind numbing how this team simply can not make any kind of run.

    • Pete

      The Reds are getting ready to run the gauntlet:
      Braves (1)
      Angels (2)
      Cubs (4)
      Nationals (3)
      Cards (4)
      Padres (3)
      Pirates (3)
      Marlins (4)
      Cards (3)

      If there is a good time for a red hot streak, this is it. Games through August.

      Couple of kids in Louisville worth keeping an eye on:
      Chad Tromp (C)
      Joe Kuhnel (RP)
      Narciso Crook (OF)

      Any of these guys might give the team a hitting boost. Sorry, no SS but Tromp is killing it: 400/526/1,1133, wRC+ = 287, only 38 PA’s but hopefully the Reds are watching this kid closely. The team needs more power and Tromp is showing it with 7 HR’s.

  11. rex

    looking at the sched I seen this weekend as the hardest match up of the second half.

    A split wins the head to head 4 to 3.

    A split is not a bad thing at all.

  12. M

    JR House needs to be sent down to work on his game.

    • RojoBenjy

      It seems he wasn’t informed by his club that you don’t run on Duvall.

      • Scott C

        Or yo0u don’t send Winker unless the outfielder hasn’t touched the ball yet. Not putting Winker down but he is not fleet of foot.

      • Eric B

        It was a gamble hoping Duvall throw would offline.
        House made his first mistake as 3rd base coach.
        In hindsight:

        Jesse runs like a pregnant penguin
        Duvall possesses a cannon
        The ball landed 30 feet behind 3rd base

  13. MARK MOORE

    Hing with them, but thr walks and sending Winker doomed us. Hoping for the split today.

  14. Shchi Cossack

    The home plate umpire had a legitimately tight strike zone. Trevor Bauer was just barely missing that strike zone, usually by 1-2 inches. Other than that, I thought Bauer pitched a good game. He obviously battled against every hitter. With the situation of being traded and wanting to impress his new team and teammates impacting Bauer, I’m happy with his performance but displeased about the results. We will see better results in future games.

    The game of inches did not go in the Reds favor, with the balls hit by the Braves literally hugging the 1B and 3B lines. This was a game against the send best team in the NL and the Reds played them tough, despite 9 walks by Reds pitchers. Bauer only relinquished 3 of those 9 walks while pitching half the innings in the game.

  15. CFD3000

    Sorry I couldn’t chime in from SunTrust Park last night – internet connection was awful. Also had a frustrating concessions encounter, and those issues remind me how solid the GABP experience is (independent of the team on the field). This was an awful game for the Reds, and a very lucky game for the Braves. Two key hits, doubles by Freeman and Donaldson, were seeing eye griunders down the line. Relievers literally didn’t allow a hit for 5 innings, but still gave up two runs wrapped in a 6 walk package. And except for Barnhart’s late flare nothing fell in for the Reds. This game was as sloppy as Friday’s was crisp.

    Bauer will be good. He just didn’t look relaxed, and the guy is definitely intense. Watched him long toss in left field befor the game and he has a gun. Whoever was throwing it back to him had three times the height in his trajectory and Bauer was throwing lasers. I was right with you Jeff on predicting Aquino’s home run and hope he can relax now too. And finally, JR House made a big mistake, but so did Winker. With that flare in front of him, if he reads it off the bat he scores easily, but just didn’t seem to be sure it would fall. Should have stopped at third, and that could have changed the outcome. Here’s hoping Gray is on and the Reds can split today.

    • da bear

      Winker read the ball well, he’s just not that fast. Winker was not far behind Iglesias who had to stay close enough to the third base bag in case a Brave caught the ball. Had Duvall or one of the other two Braves dove for the ball and kept it from being picked cleanly off the bounce then Winker scores easily. Not gonna fault House too much based on the poor result, House took that aggressive chance when he saw Winker was already near third base. Unfortunately the ball bounced softly for Duvall to grab hold of.

      Bauer will be great. Reds need another strong RH bat. Hopefully Aquino is part of the solution. Reds should let VanMeter and Winker face off against lefties the rest of the season.

  16. jbonireland

    While I don’t like David Bell blaming him for the decisions made last night is wrong. He wasn’t managing, Freddie B was. As far as JR House lighten up, he has done a relatively good job this year. Better then what we have had there the last several years.

    A shame they are sitting Aquino down, for a .209 hitting guy to play second base. Starting almost anybody rather than DD would be better, however Winer should be in left, Van Meter at second and AA in right. DD is not the answer going forward.

  17. BigBill

    Is no one going to talk about Jared Hughes and how he seems terrified to throw a strike? Seems time to think about DFA. He looks done.

    • RedAlert

      Well said !! Completely agree with you !!

      Please get in that dugout Shchi ! Your words make more sense then anything that coaching staff did last night – clueless is putting it mildly !

  18. Shchi Cossack

    Now about the coaching and in-game management…

    The stupid incessant double switches have to stop. If the Reds insist on carrying an 8-man bullpen, then use the bullpen and quit churning the few bench options available. Sims pitched a marvelous 1.1 innings and pulling him for a pinch hitter in the 7th inning of 3-3 game was an obvious move. The Reds have 3 stud relievers (Garrett, Lorenzen & Iglesias). The rest of the bullpen is a collection middle relievers and subpar relievers. All of their stud relievers are effective against LH and RH hitters…enough of the unnecessary handedness substitutions. Garrett pitched a solid 7th inning after relieving Sims, throwing just 8 pitches, including a SO. Garrett came back out for the 8th inning and walked the leadoff hitter, after throwing three non-swinging strikes, only two of which were called strikes. After just 14 pitches there was no reason to pull Garrett with the second double switch of the game. ANYTIME A RELIEVER ENTERS THE GAME, THERE IS NO ASSURANCE HE WILL BE EFFECTIVE!!! Replacing a struggling pitcher with a reliever from the bullpen represents a no-brainer move. Replacing a subpar reliever, even if he is not struggling, with a stud reliever can be justified in a lot of situations. Replacing a stud reliever after just 14 pitches when he is not struggling is just plain stupid. It just churns the bullpen and wastes the few bench players available.

    Sending Winker home with just 1 out of a tie ballgame in the 9th inning on a short flyball to LF with Duvall playing LF was just plain stupid. If Winker had been standing on 3B on a sac fly to short LF with Duvall playing LF, he would have NEVER been sent home. In the same situation, but a short flyball hit to LF that Winker read properly and got a good jump from 2B to 3B, represented the same situation, Duvall has the baseball in hand in short LF while Winker was rounding 3B. It was no contest.