After the start time was delayed by an hour and thirty eight minutes due to malfunctioning lights, both starting pitchers were lights out in this one. Tyler Mahle was probably excited to not be matched up against Noah Syndergaard, but Mike Fiers pitched about as well as one can. He threw baseball’s 300th no hitter, the first since James Paxton did it exactly one year ago against the Blue Jays. Congrats to Mike on his second career no-hitter.
Mahle came into the game with the worst run support of any pitcher in the league who has made at least four starts (1.5 runs per game). Despite pitching well (again), he could not find a way to give up negative runs. Because of this, the Reds lost.
|Cincinnati Reds (15-21)||0||0||1|
|Oakland Athletics (16-21)||2||5||1|
|W: Fiers (3-3) L: Mahle (0-5)|
|FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score | Statcast|
After putting up 37 runs against the Giants, the Reds could not manage a single hit against the Athletics. Mike Fiers was not pitching well coming into this game either. Just one of those days for the feast or famine Reds offense.
In the 2nd inning, Yasiel Puig crushed a ball 398 feet with a 103 mph exit velocity but could not quite get it out of the park. It had an 86% hit probability according to Statcast. Puig has been hitting the ball hard this year with not much to show for it. He currently has the largest gap between SLG (0.367) and xSLG (0.438), as well as the largest gaps between BA/xBA and wOBA/xwOBA. Bottom line, his hits (and home runs) will come.
With two outs in the top of the 6th, Votto banged a 395 foot shot to center field but was robbed of a home run by Ramon Laureano. The ball had a 103 mph exit velocity and a 62% chance of being a hit. Really nice contact but a better defensive play.
A 7th inning walk by Suarez was immediately erased by a Jesse Winker double play. Puig followed that up with a walk but Derek Dietrich popped up to end the inning. That would be the last threat the Reds would pose.
Despite allowing a couple hits and a run early on, Tyler Mahle looked really, really good on the mound. He controlled the top of the zone with his signature command of his fastball and also kept his curveball down, getting really nice break on the pitch. Matt Wilkes thought the curve looked sharper than in Mahle’s previous starts. Definitely an encouraging sign for Mahle as he continues developing his pitch arsenal.
Mahle’s final line was 6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K. His FIP/xFIP was 0.97/1.91, bringing his yearly numbers down to 3.32/3.09. He has a 3.69 ERA. That will do, Tyler.
Jose Iglesias helped out his pitcher on the first ball in play with a nice double play, fielding the ball between 1st and 2nd (Reds were in the shift) and tagging the runner before throwing to Joey in one smooth motion. Can’t say enough about this guy’s defense.
Oakland got on the board first in the second inning after Mahle allowed a single to Kendrys Morales and then a double to Jurickson Profar. The Reds relay from Puig to Votto appeared to be in time, but Barnhart lunged past the sliding runner, expecting him to go wide, and missed the tag.
Puig made a nice diving catch to end the 5th inning, diving to catch a Marcus Semien line drive with an 80% hit probability.
Jurickson Profar came through again with a home run in the 8th inning off of Robert Stephenson. It was the first homer Bob Steve has allowed this year. He also gave up an even harder hit line drive out to Nick Senzel with a 90% hit probability. Not his best inning of the season. He did come back out in the 8th and get two strikeouts.
Other Game Notes
Joey Votto popped up to second base to lead off the game. Talk about a bad omen for the offense.
On a lighter note, Derek Dietrich is legit
Baseball player by day, electrician by night. ??? pic.twitter.com/SXsGXHIQRX
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) May 8, 2019
Of particular note in this Fiers/Reds no-hit chase:
He's pretty much the only player out there at the moment who can perhaps challenge Homer Bailey in the 'lowest career WAR with multiple no-hitters' challenge.
— Red Reporter (@redreporter) May 8, 2019
The Reds haven't been no-hit since Jake Arrieta did it in a 16-0 Cubs win on 4/21/16 at Great American Ball Park.
— Reds Media Relations (@RedsPR) May 8, 2019
The Reds take on the Athletics for Game 2 of the series tomorrow. Same time (hopefully 10:10 EST and not 11:45 EST), same place. Sonny Gray takes on Brett Anderson.