It occurred to me last night, as I interacted with the feedback from this piece on worrying about a baseball team, that for all my philosophical jive, my overnight teeth grinding has worsened to the point where I’ve cracked two teeth and have to wear a hateful mouthguard to save what’s left. This acceleration started taking place after Opening Day. The Reds owe me $1,042 for a crown and one hundred billion dollars for undue pain and suffering. Last night’s free pizza and discounted car wash ain’t gonna cut it.
I wrote that even a bad moment, not even yet a loss, can feel like a physical blow. Well, last night I spent the last four innings standing up, running between my laptop and the TV and the radio, shouting things, twirling around the living room, slapping the back of the couch, not drinking enough water, and, during the back-to-back-to-back wonderstunt, feeling my heart rate put on the afterburners– as it tends to do while one is watching history, and one’s team has in sight a winning percentage of .200. This is the other side of the mouthguard.
The box score goes on for miles. It’s like a CVS receipt. The man behind the magic, Marlins pitcher Wei-Yin Chen, was grimly left on the mound for the whole bloody spectacle, until Amnesty International parachuted in a diplomatic intervention squad. He left the game in the 9th with an ERA of 45.
Dare we discover if we can win a game like a normal team instead of having to resort to a hydrogen bomb of home runs every night? Which could get expensive? First pitch is 6:40 PM.
If I’m starting pitcher Tyler Mahle, I’m walking around with a puke bucket today, because I’m gonna be nervous. Although he has an ERA of 0.00 after pitching beautifully against Pittsburgh for six innings, his sparkliness was completely wasted by the offense, which was at that point was still at the bottom of the well it somehow wandered into. So now he’s got one wasted start and a teamful of Marlins who are very, very mad, plus a Reds offense that, seeing that they now have run differential of +1, might think that’s enough for April.
Best wishes, Tyler.
It’s Trevor Richards, who sounds like every preppy bad guy in every 80’s movie ever. If Trevor’s company of land developers are trying to shut down a lodge and the Reds are the only thing standing between him and unemployment for the entire teen staff, things could get interesting. I expect a dance-off.
I was on a business chat with someone in California while the game was going on last night, and the instant we started the back-to-back-back homers started reeling. The person on the other end wondered where I’d disappeared to. I considered the safe route and telling her that cow fell on my face or something, but the godmother in me forced out the truth.
“The Reds just got three home runs in row,” I informed her.
“I must be lucky!” she typed back. So then I informed her that I was terribly sorry, but she was going to have to remain on the line for approximately the next four innings.
But let’s back this up: Who can we, really, thank for beating the Marlins by two touchdowns? When did the offensive explosion begin? Who is the conquerer amongst conquerers?
Where all things current Reds begin and end, of course: Joey Votto.
Votto, if you’ll recall, was plunked by Chen in the 6th. Votto clenched his bat and took four decisive, stomping steps towards the pitcher, and… gently tossed the bruise-making ball right back to him in a gentlemanly, decidedly Canadian fashion.
Nice guy, Joey Votto. pic.twitter.com/BjEaFbEKge
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) April 10, 2019
Now although the team had already scored two on Chen at this point, I do believe this was the moment in which he fully and completely lost his ability to function, not only as a professional pitcher of baseballs, but as a human being. For a space of two seconds, Joey Votto was advancing directly upon him with a baseball bat, with a dugout of Reds behind him, Reds who were still picking warning track dust out of their hair from the last fight. But then… JK! I’m just savin’ you some steps into the infield, bro!
He was destroyed. He may never be the same.
Wei-Yin Chen met the Lord last night.
- Jesse Winker RF
- Joey Votto 1B
- Matt Kemp LF
- Eugenio Suarez 3B
- Scott Schebler CF
- Derek Dietrich 2B
- Tucker Barnhart C
- Jose Iglesias SS
- Tyler Mahle P
- Curtis Granderson LF
- Miguel Rojas SS
- Neil Walker 1B
- Starlin Castro 2B
- Jorge Alfaro C
- Lewis Brinson CF
- Martin Prado 3B
- Peter O’Brien RF
- Trevor Richards P
-Manager David Bell missed the game due to his stupid dumb one-game suspension, but he will be back tonight. Puig is out for yet another game because he has a stupid dumb suspension too, for being awesome.
-Hunter Greene underwent his Tommy John surgery yesterday.
News and Notes
Nick Kirby tweeted this crapload of numbers and they seem vaguely important so I thought you guys would want to see:
Reds SP NL ranks: 1.7 fWAR (1st), 2.91 FIP (1st), 0.50 HR/9 (1st), 3.02 ERA (2nd), 1.16 WHIP (t-2nd), 10.06 K/9 (4th)
— ???? ????y (@Nicholaspkirby) April 10, 2019
-Eugenio Suarez’s home run last night was his 100th.
-I will be in three different airports today and cannot eat any Cinnabon.