Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

FINAL
San Diego 2
Cincinnati 7

W: B. Arroyo (10-9)
L: A. Cashner (8-6)
BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–Some nights, Bronson Arroyo is simply an artist. Tonight: one run allowed on four hits in seven innings. Arroyo struck out seven and walked none. He’s the man.

–Stop the presses! Todd Frazier had two hits in four ABs, with a double, a walk and three runs scored!

–Joey Votto was 2-4, with a well-struck triple, two runs scored, and two RBI. Brandon Phillips was 2-4 and knocked in two more runs on his 14th homer. BP now has 86 RBI. Jay Bruce and Chris Heisey each doubled in a run.

–Jonathan Broxton returned to the Reds, and he was throwing 98 mph? Really? What year is this?

NEGATIVES
–None.

NOT-SO-RANDOM THOUGHTS
–Baseball is a funny game. The Reds were simply horrible last week, and now they’ve won three in a row. This is precisely why I always tell you: the Redlegs are never as good as they seem on their best day, and they are never as bad as they seem on their worst day.

Yes, this team has some real issues, and the season is slipping away from them in some respects. But there is still a lot to play for.

–Tonight is a perfect example of why Bronson Arroyo is my favorite Red.* He was masterful at times. As I noted on Twitter, he looks like he’s painting a picture out there. He’s an artist.

–Todd Frazier’s first-inning double ended an 0-for-31 streak. No hits in 31 ABs. That’s hard to do. As the Little League World Series gets started, I expect Frazier to go on a roll.

–Ryan Hanigan returned from the disabled list tonight. The Nation loves Hanigan, and we always have. Search for him in our archives, and you’ll see a picture we posted from when he was playing for AA Chattanooga. The guy gets on base, and he is a wonderful defensive catcher. I’m happy he plays for the Cincinnati Reds.

That said…please don’t start giving him credit for Arroyo’s great performance tonight. Let’s not use this to justify limiting the playing time of Devin Mesoraco, who has come into his own in Hanigan’s absence, and who has been the hottest hitter for the Reds recently. Both guys deserve to play. At this point, Mesoraco probably deserves the lion’s share of the playing time, but we need both.

–I love baseball. Don’t you love baseball? I love baseball.

Source: FanGraphs

*Arroyo is my favorite Red, but he isn’t my favorite baseball player. Do you know who has that honor?