Halley’s Comet comes more often than Gerrit Cole gives up four runs in one inning. At least before tonight. Cole had never done it while pitching for the Pirates. Gerrit Cole hasn’t given up four runs in any game this year. He’s only given up three runs twice. Cole and Max Scherzer are the leading contenders to start the All-Star Game for National League three weeks from now. But tonight, the Cincinnati Reds scored four runs in the first against Gerrit Cole and knocked him out in the fifth inning.

Reds 5, Pirates 2 | FanGraphs Stuff | Positive Iglesias Update

Billy Hamilton drew an 8-pitch walk leading off the first (more of that, please). It looked for a moment like Hamilton’s two subsequent stolen bases might go to waste as Cole retired Ivan De Jesus and Joey Votto. But Super Todd Frazier came to the rescue as he lunged across the plate to poke an 89-mph slider into right field that Pirates right fielder Gregory Polanco just missed catching. Jay Bruce followed with a 7-pitch at bat that ended with Bruce lining a 98-mph fastball to the left-center gap, scoring Frazier. Then Marlon Byrd turned around the first pitch he saw from Cole – a 97 mph fastball – and knocked it over the centerfield fence.

Reds 4, Halley’s Comet 0.

The Reds had kicked Gerrit Cole’s asteroid.

The question then became run prevention, could Mike Leake and the defense make the four runs stick. Answer: yes. Leake gave up a run in the second inning, but worked around a lead-off double in the fourth. He gave up another run in the fifth, when it could have been worse. Leake then finished his seventh inning of work striking out Starling Marte with Pirates on second and third. Leake struck out five and didn’t walk anyone.

After giving up the obligatory first-batter walk, Ryan Mattheus retired the next two in the eighth. Manny Parra was brought in to LOOGY Pedro Alvarez, which he did. Pittsburgh native J.J. Hoover, the Reds’ next closer, filled in for Aroldis Chapman who is on paternity leave. (Hint to Reds’ scouts: Check out Li’l Missile’s left arm.) Hoover ran his streak of scoreless innings to 26.2 dating back to April 21.

Ivan De Jesus had two hits and a walk. Eugenio Suarez had two hits. Tucker Barnhart recorded his first three-hit night as a major leaguer. Joey Votto walked twice. He’s now reached base in 31 consecutive games.

Note: 45 years ago tonight the Reds played their final game at Crosley Field. Check out Chris Garber’s photo vault and the story about John Ring’s amazing ball.

The Reds are now 6-2 against Pittsburgh.