Final R H E
  Cincinnati Reds  (51-46) 1 7 1
  New York Yankees (49-47) 7 9  0 
 W: McCarthy (4-10)     L: Simon (12-4)
 FanGraphs Win Probability |   The Worldwide Leader’s Box Score    |   Game Photos

Help still wanted  The Reds offense struggled for the second day. They struck out 13 times. Billy Hamilton didn’t have a line drive in the series until the Reds were down 7-1 today, when their odds of losing were 99.3%. Jay Bruce is 0-for-7 with the one stinkin’ walk the Reds have worked in two games. Todd Frazier and Devin Mesoraco have three singles between them. Mesoraco struck out three times today. Chris Heisey and Brayan Peña have hit well in New York, but they’re about the only ones.

Pitching numbers  If you read the series preview or if you look at the right stats, it wouldn’t have surprised you that Brandon McCarthy out-pitched Alfredo Simon. Simon didn’t pitch that poorly over five innings, but with the Reds offense what it is, you’d never know it.

Relief  Solid performances by Carlos Contreras and Jumbo Diaz in their low-leverage innings.

Unlucky, day 2  J.J. Hoover certainly deserved better today. He gave up only one reasonably hard-hit ball – a single – yet because of two pure 100% luck jobs, the squibber off McCann’s bat that stopped next to the pitcher’s mound and Kelly Johnson’s soft roller that stopped a few feet into the outfield, the Yankees scored three runs in Hoover’s inning.

Baseball is a strange game  The Reds played the Pirates in a three-game series just before the All-Star break. On the one hand, the Reds were close to sweeping the series. On the other hand, the Reds two wins were the product of extremely improbable events, otherwise they’d have been swept. More of the same in this series so far, without the magic. If you’re surprised or apprehensive after these two games, you either don’t understand who the Reds are or you’re easily panicked. 🙂