With today’s exciting extra-inning victory, the Cincinnati Reds sent 45,000 Cardinals fans home unhappy and as the best fans in baseball, undoubtedly aware the Reds have now won three straight series against their beloved Cardinals. The win also put another tiny dent into St. Louis’ postseason hopes.

The Reds head to Pittsburgh for a 3-game series, starting with a 1:35 p.m. Labor Day special tomorrow. 

Cincinnati Reds 6 (59-78) • St. Louis Cardinals 4 (76-61)

Box Score || Win % || Statcast Hitters Report || Statcast Pitchers Report

Anthony DeSclafani clearly struggled with command throughout his 3.2 innings of work. He had shut out the Cardinals through the first three innings, but manager Jim Riggleman yanked him after giving up two runs in the fourth on a HBP, single, double and bunt single. With two on and two out, Riggleman brought in Wandy Peralta to face Matt Carpenter (lefty on lefty) instead of having DeScafani face Carpenter for a third time. Peralta induced Carpenter to ground out to Joey Votto. It was the only batter Peralta faced.

DeSclafani was making his 16th start of the year. In his 7 previous appearances since the All Star Game, he had struck out 40 batters and walked just 8 in 43 innings. Today, he struck out four and walked two. Over that stretch, DeSclafani’s ERA was 3.35 and xFIP was 3.39.

Lucas Sims (more on him below) made an impressive debut with the Reds, pitching a clean 5th and 6th inning, with three strikeouts. He gave up a lead-off walk in the 7th before being pulled for Jared Hughes. Let’s see plenty more of Mr. Sims, please.

Hughes gave up a line shot down the first base line to Matt Adams, but fortunately it found Joey Votto’s glove for a double play. But Hughes gave up a lead-off walk in the 8th, followed by a single and an intentional walk to load the bases. After recording a pop-up for the second out. The speedy Harrison Bader hit a soft ground ball to SS and beat out Jose Peraza’s throw, scoring a run. Ground ball pitchers are good. Strikeout pitchers are better.

Michael Lorenzen pitched a dramatic bottom of the 9th. The Cardinals loaded the bases on an emergency-swing double, an intentional walk and a bunt that stayed fair, all with no outs. Riggleman brought in Brandon Dixon off the bench for an extra infielder. Lorenzen reared back and struck out Jose Martinez with 98-mph fastballs, induced a ground ball force at the plate and a pop-up to short right field to get out of the inning. That meant free baseball.

Raisel Iglesias gave up a run and two more base runners before locking down the win in the bottom of the 10th.

The Reds jumped on Cardinals starter Luke Weaver for two runs in the first. But it could have been much worse in the 40-pitch inning for Weaver. Billy Hamilton doubled, Joey Votto walked, Scooter Gennett singled and a wild pitch scored Votto making the score 2-0 with one out. Eugenio Suarez and Scott Schebler walked to load the bases. But Mason Williams, who for some reason was batting ahead of Curt Casali, hit into a double play. The Reds also loaded the bases in the second inning against Weaver, before Gennett grounded out.

The Reds took the lead in the 7th on another double by Billy Hamilton, a sacrifice bunt by Jose Peraza and a 380-foot sacrifice fly by Joey Votto. But HOF manager Earl Weaver used to say, when you play for one run, that’s all you get.

Joey Votto led off the 10th inning with his 94th walk of the season. Only Mike Trout and Bryce Harper have more. After Scooter Gennett popped out, Eugenio Suarez followed with his 31st home run of the season, a 405-foot majestic blast into the Reds bullpen. Seconds later, Brandon Dixon followed with his own homer into the bullpen and the Reds had a 6-3 lead. So much for small ball. Both homers came off the deserving Bud Norris. 

Dilson Herrera Waves Hello (from the bench) Lucas (Luke) Sims made his Reds debut. The 24-year-old RHP was the headliner in the 3-player return from the Atlanta Braves for Adam Duvall. It wasn’t Sims’ major league debut, as he made 20 appearances, including 10 starts, for the Braves. “I’m sure the Reds didn’t bring him up here to pitch out of the bullpen,” said Chris Welsh. 

The Cardinals Way (more on TCW in the morning) The Cardinals, who I do believe practice The Cardinals Way, use a leadoff hitter with 35 home runs, the N.L. leader in that, and a 15% walk-rate. He’s sixth in the NL in OBP (.388).

10 Responses

  1. roger garrett

    One of these days we will be playing important games in Sept but until then playing spoiler is ok.Home runs are better then singles for sure.Suarez and Dixon hammered those balls.No doubters are a cool thing.

  2. Sliotar

    I look forward to tomorrow’s piece. Fay’s piece yesterday was a different spin on what “TCW” is, compared to what I thought for years it has been.

    If Castillo, who we all have high hopes for, has DeSclafani’s start today, the game might have gotten away from the Reds in the 4th.

    Disco’s experience showed. He was grinding out there, but never let it all get the best of him and did not make the big mistake ptich.

    Very enjoyable series win.

  3. Nick Carrington

    Sims’ breaking stuff looked nasty. Glad to have him on the roster.

    In his last two outings, Lorenzen has thrown 31 pitches. 29 strikes.

  4. DHud

    Peralta v. Carpenter

    I’m not taking that matchup 1 out of 100 times

  5. Mark

    I feel best to go with Winker in Lf Ervin in cf and senzel in rf. Infield stays the way it is next season. Starting pitching fix is what is needed somehow someway. I look to move on from schebler as a piece in a trade for a starter.

    • jazzmanbbfan

      Although I don’t get too wrapped up in player moves, or opinions about them, one of the enduring themes this year has been the lack of power hitters on the Reds, especially with Votto seeming to have rapidly declined in that area. One thing Schebler does better than anyone not named Lorenzen, is hit the ball hard. Thus, I’m not sure I would be looking to move him over Winker. I would actually prefer to keep both of them and move Scooter, opening up 2B for Senzel.

  6. bouwills

    On Saturday night, Castillo issues a walk with 2 outs in the 7th & is pulled for Hernandez. Then 3 outs later Hernandez walked a batter & is replaced by Iglesias. Yesterday DeSclafani, after giving up 2 runs in the 4th, walked a batter & was replaced. Later in the game after 2 great innings, Sims walked a batter & is replaced. Even in the 9th, with 2 outs, Iglesias walked a guy & Darwin paid him a visit. A visit that Iglesias didn’t appear tooo pleased with. Perhaps all that is just coincidence, but I think maybe Riggleman has drawn a line in the sand & expects his pitchers to throw strikes. If so, I say a big ol’ ATTA BOY Jim. Keep pulling pitchers that don’t challenge the hitters & I don’t care how much you flash the bunt sign.

    • jazzmanbbfan

      Riggleman’s post game comments reflected his frustration with 5 inning-opening walks, and a HBP to a leadoff hitter. I think those were the numbers anyway.

  7. Jim Walker

    I agree the alternative to trading is buying with $$$. My guess is they may end up doing one each way depending on what each market takes. Votto, Scooter, Winker and Schebler make them too LH batting.

    Votto’s not going anywhere, so one of the other three is who they need to try and lead with on the trade market. They have Senzel, Ervin, and Herrera to back fill whatever hole they create. Either of the latter 2 of this trio could be an additional piece in the trade package.

    There is a lot of talk right now about the “Cardinal way”. This would be the Cardinal way.

  8. Jim Walker

    The Reds are in something of a weakened position re: trading top prospects and talent because of legitimate injury concerns.
    Greene with the elbow, Senzel vertigo and the hand surgery. Trammell has had as star crossed 2nd half; if I count correctly he’s been on concussion protocol twice; and let’s not forget he was star running back in in high school which may figure in to the concussion history. This is Tyler Stephenson’s 1st season in the last three not marked with a major injury.

    And even at the MLB level there is Scooter’s shoulder, Winker’s surgical shoulder (torn labrum), and Schebler missing a third of the season with a variety of ills on the heels of also missing significant time in 2017.