Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

FINAL (10 innings)
Cincinnati 6
Florida 5
WP: Masset (2-0)
LP: Badenhop (0-1)
S: Cordero (3)
BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–Only one place to start: Scott Rolen. Rolen had the best game of his Reds career (and one of the best in his entire career, perhaps?), going 3-5 with two homers, two runs scored, and three RBI. His first homer gave the Reds the lead, and his final hit scored Joey Votto with what turned out to be the winning run.

I don’t know about this sentiment, but the guy played a great game today.

–Jay Bruce continued to rip the ball, but he got a couple of them to fall for base hits today, including a double. You could see the relief on his face when he reached second after that double in the second inning. Keep hammering ’em, Jay.

–Great bullpen work by Logan Ondrusek and CoCo. I questioned the decision to bring in Ondrusek in a 5-5 game, but the kid was lights out. Dusty Baker is smarter than me.

–The Reds had 11 hits. That’s a positive.

–The Reds are undefeated on the road!

NEGATIVES
–Joey Votto looked like a deer in the headlights on a defensive play in the eighth. Just caught a ground ball and was so indecisive that he didn’t get any outs. Thanks to Nick Masset, it didn’t come back to haunt the Reds, but it very easily could’ve lost the game (the Marlins loaded the bases).

–Johnny Cueto struggled all night long. He gave up 9 hits and 4 runs in 5 innings; Cueto threw 110 pitches and never seemed to be in command at any time. We need better than that from Johnny.

ETC.
–Let me tell you what I enjoyed about this one: the Reds kept fighting back. A couple of times, they started to look like the same old Reds and you half-expected them to just fold up their tents and give up. They didn’t. The team was fun to watch tonight.

–Thom Brennaman says what we’ve all been thinking about Mike Lincoln.

–The camera flashed into the dugout once, and I swear I saw Paul Janish in there with a “BB” on his back.

–The Reds are above .500. Great way to start the road trip.

— Celebrate, Scotty!

*This Offense Stinks

17 Responses

  1. BJ Ruble

    That was by far the best the offense has looked overall. Phillips is nowhere close to hitting the ball well right now, hence the bunt. Hopefully that will jump start him. I actually though Lincoln pitched well tonight, and I never thought I would say that…

    One thing watching the game that still bugs me is that Cabrera moves like he has concrete cleats. His range is terrible, way worse than Agon coming off of injury. An average SS comes up with a couple of those balls he missed tonight.

    Great win, hopefully they can keep chugging along!

  2. Steve

    Not sure it is fair to criticize Votto on that ball in the ninth inning. The replay showed that Masset wasn’t looking at him to take the throw and Votto alertly saw that and didn’t pitch it.

    What isn’t clear is why Votto couldn’t or didn’t throw to second base. The shortstop should have been there. One thought I had, but they never showed the replays to check, was that the Reds might have been expecting a bunt and were running the wheel play where the SS covers 3B and the 2B covers 1B, leaving no one at second to take the throw. That’s just speculation, though, since the replays only looked at the 1B play not why Votto didn’t throw to second for the easy force out.

    Either way, I don’t think Votto likely deserves the blame. In fact, he might have prevented a bigger disaster with his alertness. Masset was out of it.

  3. pinson343

    @Steve: Interesting, I was wondering what happened, and still haven’t seen the play. An infield single to first base sounded like a broken defensive play of same kind.

    Whether Votto could have done anything on that play or not, his baserunning on the game winning hit was highly alert. Rolen hit the ball off the end of his bat, and it barely cleared Uggla’s glove when he leaped, but Votto did not hesitate. And if he did hesitate, he wouldn’t have scored.

    Overall a nice win, the way things went in innings 6 thru 8, I felt we’d lose. We might have a mentally tough team here.

    I and others complained about the bullpen in inning 7, but actually they just gave up a cheap run. And overall the bullpen got the job done.

  4. Travis G.

    As much as his “Cowboy” schtick drives me batty, I do enjoy Brantley’s discussions about pitcher mechanics. He knows what he’s talking about and describes it well, and he was right on about Cueto not finishing well when he released the ball. His body falls off to the left instead of remaining more upright as he finishes the windup.

    Once he pointed that out, you could see it, and from a physics standpoint it makes sense. Price needs to work with him on that (as I suspect he already is).

  5. Jason1972

    Don’t look now but the Reds have won 4 of their last 5!

  6. RiverCity Redleg

    @Steve: You could see in one of the angles they showed that Cabrera was at 2nd ready for the throw. The only reason I could see for him not throwing to 2nd was that the runner may have been in the way. It did seem that Masset was more worried about where the bag was than he was about getting the toss from Votto, but Votto has still got to make the throw and let Masset make the play.

  7. Bill Lack

    Every time I see the Marlins I think “Ross and Cantu could have been valuable pieces here”…but we let Cantu walk and sold Cody Ross…

    Update: Just read this on Lance’s blog, I’d forgotten it.

    Cantú was released by the Reds on December 5, 2007, and was signed by the Florida Marlins on December 18, 2007. The Reds released Cantú to open up a spot on the 40-man roster for the acquisition of RHP Sergio Valenzuela from the Atlanta Braves in the MLB Rule 5 Draft on December 6, 2007. Valenzuela was returned to the Braves in 2008.

    • Jason1972

      Cantú was released by the Reds on December 5, 2007, and was signed by the Florida Marlins on December 18, 2007. The Reds released Cantú to open up a spot on the 40-man roster for the acquisition of RHP Sergio Valenzuela from the Atlanta Braves in the MLB Rule 5 Draft on December 6, 2007. Valenzuela was returned to the Braves in 2008.

      That really has to go down as the worst personnel decision of the last 20 years (yes even more than Taveras et al). The value they threw away was simply insane. Who was the engineer of that stupidity?

  8. Nathan in Lebanon

    Yeah, it looked to me like Masset was looking towards 2B and Votto stopped his throw because when he saw Masset wasn’t looking. The way Masset was hanging his head after that play made me think he knew he messed up there. Great way to get out of that jam though!

  9. Sultan of Swaff

    Brantley is dead on about Cueto. Anytime a guy misses high and in to a righty he’s not finishing his pitches. This is two starts in a row where Johnny is grasping for straws.
    This is his third big league season, and he’s basically the same guy, if not worse. Is that good enough, given his ‘stuff’?

  10. Jason1972

    Maybe he’s just a serviceable 4th or 5th starter. If that is who he ends up being, I am ok with that as long as we have guys like Bailey, Leake, Volquez, and Chapman to step up.

  11. Travis G.

    I think the whole winter ball/WBC fatigue from last year obscures the real issue: Cueto’s kind of chubby and out of shape.

  12. TC

    I question your recap of the Votto play in the 8th. I think it was a heads up play by Votto.

    At first I yelled, “VOTTO!!!”, but realized he did not make the toss because Ondrusek was not looking for the ball. Votto was wise not to force a bad play by tossing the ball to the pitcher we seemed more worried about where to put his foot so that the runner wouldn’t step on it. Ondrusek never even looked at Votto until the runner was well safe.

  13. TC

    I really need to read what others say first before I comment. Seems others had already made the point. I thought it was Ondrusek though and not Massett. So whomever it was, that is what I saw.

  14. mike

    @Bill Lack: yes, gave them away…ugh. Imagine for a second. Ross I don’t miss so much but imagine for a second Cantu at 2B and Phillips at SS.

  15. Welcome to Reds Country » Rolen leads Reds to win in 10

    […] Titanic Struggle Recap Only one place to start: Scott Rolen. Rolen had the best game of his Reds career (and one of the best in his entire career, perhaps?), going 3-5 with two homers, two runs scored, and three RBI. His first homer gave the Reds the lead, and his final hit scored Joey Votto with what turned out to be the winning run.  Read more at Redleg Nation. […]