Following a sloppy top of the first inning that somehow, someway saw the Reds enter their half of the frame still tied, Eugenio Suarez went yard for the third straight day. There’s really no way to accurately explain how beautiful it has been to watch Suarez blossom into his new role as face of the franchise, but let me try:
- Have you ever bitten into a grilled cheese sandwich where all the cheese melted and perfectly consistent while the bread has stayed golden brown?
- Have you ever made eye contact with a deer or a fox or some other wild animal from a distance and the moment lasts for longer than it should and finally the animal nods at you before sauntering away and you’re left believing in magic or at least that nature respects you?
- Have you ever woken up and been excited by a completely nondescript day?
It’s beautiful I tell you, beautiful.
(Meanwhile, a live look-in at Joey Votto:)
Shhh Joey, it’s okay. The great yellow school bus will come for you and you will gently shepherd Canadian children to first bas…er, school.
Cincinnati RedsÃ‚Â 7 | St. Louis Cardinals 3 | Coffee Shop Stream Quality Bad
Ã¢â‚¬â€ The aforementioned Eugenio Suarez has had himself a series against these Cardinals. Another two-run homer in the first after having just ended the top half of the frame with a slick-looking barehand play will haunt the Best Fans in Baseball waking moments.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Coming into today’s game, Scooter Gennett was 0 for 14 following the All Star Break. Well after an ugly strikeout in the first, Scooter put that narrative to rest, going 3 for 4 on the day with a double to boot. I’m still on the trade Scooter train (sorry Nick), but he’s sure as heck fun to watch right now.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Baseball Reference says Sal Romano’s full name is Salvatore J. Romano, so I can only assume the J. stands for “Just name me the rotation’s No. 4 and let me EAT already.” Or maybe it’s “James” what do I know.
Romano put together another solid start today, going 6.0 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with five strikeouts. On that last point, three of those strikeouts came against Harrison Bader and two of those Bader strikeouts came with 1 out and runners in scoring position. Twice Ã¢â‚¬â€ TWICE Ã¢â‚¬â€ Romano bullied the Cardinals eighth hitter into submission, keeping the Cards from scoring by capitalizing on facing the pitcher’s spot with 2 outs instead.
The second time Romano K’d Bader with a runner at third, the Cards pulled their starter Jack Flaherty who was having quite the day himself in favor of a pinch hitter. What did Romano do? Make a barehanded play on a comebacker and end the inning with the lead intact.
Nice escape by Romano. #Reds botched four plays in the inning and he came out without giving up a run.
— John Fay (@johnfayman) July 25, 2018
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Tucker Barnhart ripped a mammoth homer in the sixth to extend the Reds lead to three and Adam Duvall put an oppo shot out earlier in the game. These Reds sure know how to play long ball.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Joey “Not Dead” Votto walked thrice and was the man on base for both two-run homers because of it. He may not be hitting well right now, but he’s still pretty dang good.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Phil Ervin doubled in two insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth to really put the game out of reach.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ The defense today was atrocious. Suarez dropped a bloop in left on the first batter of the game. Scooter and Jose Peraza collided on a groundball. Peraza whiffed on another grounder and then Duvall threw home instead of second allowing the running to advance. Just bad, bad defense.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Yadier Molina homered 🙁
NOT SO RANDOM THOUGHTS
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Having spent much of my baseball career floundering at Pitcher Fielding Position drills, something the Reds’ broadcasters harped on in the fifth really bothered me.
Joey fielded a short hop at first with his momentum taking him to the plate and Matt Carpenter only four or five steps from the bag. Sal Romano, maybe four feet in front of Votto WAS EXACTLY WHERE HE WAS SUPPOSED TO BE. Romano had hustled to cover first just as a pitcher is supposed to do in that situation.
Joey, seeing Romano, flipped the ball out of his glove in one swift motion and hit Romano in the chest with the pitcher two-handing the reception to make the out. According to the broadcast, Joey should’ve taken the ball to the bag himself. Some problems with that:
- If Joey had shifted his momentum to take it himself, Carpenter in all likelihood would’ve beat him to the bag.
- Based on where he was when he fielded that ball, Votto would risk injury making as drastic of cut as was needed.
- The comment was made that pitchers aren’t “athletic.” Yes, but that play is literally the only fielding play that pitchers practice regularly and despite the result looking a bit haphazard, Romano did what he knew he needed to do and made sure he caught that ball.
It didn’t look aesthetically pleasing, but that play was executed to perfection. Romano was where he needed to be, Votto made the right call to make the flip, and the Reds got an out rather than making a fundamental play tough. To say otherwise is to misunderstand the responsiblity of pitchers fielding their position.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ The Reds seem to be playing DL games again, this time with Jesse Winker. :/
Ã¢â‚¬â€ My WiFi died three different times during this baseball game. For most of the 4th to 6th innings, everybody looked like a potato. Thought you all would be interested.
#Reds win 7-3 over the Cardinals thanks to homers from Suarez, Duvall and Barnhart and a two-RBI double by Ervin. Take 2 of 3 from St. Louis. Phillies come to town tomorrow night.
— Justin Williams (@Williams_Justin) July 25, 2018