Final R H E
Houston Astros (48-26)
3 9 0
Cincinnati Reds (33-38)
4 6 0
W: DeSclafani (4-3) L: Verlander (4-3) S: Lorenze (4)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Justin Verlander, Justin Schmerlander! Jesse Winker got the game started with a solo home run and the Reds never looked back as they took the second game of the series against Houston.

The Offense

The game began for the Reds offense with a Jesse Winker solo home run. Joey Votto would follow with a double, and he would score later in the inning on Derek Dietrich’s 18th home run of the season. That made it 3-0. The offense was quiet for a while after that, but they got back on the board again in the 7th inning. Kyle Farmer went upper-deck on Justin Verlander in the bottom of the 7th inning, extending the Reds lead to 4-1. And it turned out that run would be very important.

Outside of the three home runs hit, Joey Votto had two doubles and Tucker Barnhart added a double of his own. No other hits for the Reds in the game. And they only walked once – MAXIMUM DEREK gets credit for that one. But it was enough.

The Pitching

Anthony DeSclafani put together a solid start, stepping up against one of the best starters in baseball and one of the best teams in baseball. DeSclafani allowed just 1 run, coming in the 6th inning, in 5.1 innings pitched on 6 hits and a walk. He also struck out 4 batters before turning the game over to David Hernandez. When he came on there was a runner on base, but he shut things down for the next 1.1 innings to keep the Astros off of the board.

Amir Garrett came on to finish out the 7th inning, and he did just that by getting Josh Reddick to ground out to Joey Votto and stranding a runner at second. But things didn’t go smoothly in the 8th. Garrett walked the leadoff batter and then saw Alex Bregman homer to cut the Reds lead down to 4-3. Raisel Iglesias would come on and strike out the final two batters of the inning to end the 8th and preserve a 4-3 lead. With the pitchers spot due up in the bottom of the inning, David Bell pinch hit for Iglesias. That led to Michael Lorenzen coming out for the 9th inning. Tyler White was the first victim, popping out to Joey votto. Tony Kemp was next, hitting a weak ground ball back to Lorenzen for the second out. Josh Reddick ended the game on a 97 MPH fastball that he grounded to Eugenio Suarez as the Reds picked up their second win in a row over the Astros.

Notes Worth Noting

Joey Votto is now just 3 doubles behind David Concepcion on the Reds all-time list.


Raisel Iglesias only had the chance to record 2 outs, but his ERA dropped to 2.90 on the season. He’s only been charged with 1 earned run in his last 14 games, dating back to  May 8th.

Scooter Gennett did not play tonight in Daytona. And he won’t play on Wednesday morning, either. The field is wet due to rain, and it’s also a field turf, not a grass field. The Reds don’t want to take any risks and Gennett is scheduled to play on Thursday when Daytona hits the road.

The Reds are riding a 3-game winning streak. The last time they won 3 games in a row was May 9-11. They haven’t won 4 in a row since April 9-13th.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Houston Astros vs Cincinnati Reds

Wednesday June 19th, 12:35pm

Gerrit Cole (6-5, 3.67 ERA) vs. Tyler Mahle (2-7, 4.33 ERA)

9 Responses

  1. CFD3000

    Solid game for the Reds. The righties (except Farmer) looked pretty helpless against a future Hall of Famer, but the lefties got it done at the plate. Solid pitching, including some key double plays for Disco, and solid defense. I think Suarez’ leap to snare a line drive in about the 7th inning would have taken him completely over Jose Peraza. Great win, great series win against a tough opponent, and an opportunity for an unlikely sweep tomorrow. Go Reds!

  2. SFRedsFan

    With Scooter and Wood on the way back and this team (maybe) starting to figure some things out, I’d love to see DW have to decide whether to buy or sell in late July. Go Reds!

  3. CFD3000

    One other thought. I don’t know if Raisel Iglesias has lost his closer’s role or not – pulling him for a pinch hitter in the 8th made a lot of sense – but I’m really pleased a) that Bell didn’t care about hurting Raisel’s feelings, b) that he trusts Lorenzen to answer the call, and c) that Lorenzen had a 1-2-3 inning to reward Bell’s confidence. The Reds are a better team if they have two (or three) relievers capable of closing.

  4. citizen54

    I liked the usage of Iglesias. Bell brought him up in a high leverage situation. Then he had Lorenzen close it up in a lower leverage situation. Bell should explain to Iglesias the concept of leverage and that putting the best reliever in that 8th inning situation gave the Reds the best chance to win. He should also highlight the fact that saves is a meaningless stat.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      I think you are spot-on. Iglesias entered in the eighth against the upper half of the Astros batting order — arguably much more important than saving him for the ninth and the bottom part of the Astros’ order. I hope Iglesias understands this and realizes it is for the betterment of the team. Supposedly when they signed him to the extension part of the reason for it is to compensate him even though he might lose numbers in the save column due to usage at other points in games.

  5. JB WV

    Getting by Verlander is huge. Sweep tomorrow with Mahle and his chip on the shoulder

  6. Reddawg12

    AJ Hinch and Alex Bregman were both talking after the game about how the Reds pitching staff is keeping their whole lineup off balance and attacking them in ways they haven’t seen yet this season. It’s so nice to hear the pitching staff getting that kind of praise from the opposing team, especially when it’s the best team in the AL. Derek Johnson has been a godsend.

  7. Don

    Great win vs Houston with Verlander pitching. After first inning he showed why he will be in the hall of fame.
    Great team win for three in a row.
    Comment on Votto after his 2nd Double last night by Walsh was right on target. He seems to up the intensity when great pitchers are there and less with average pitchers.

    The team seems to follow Votto lead, play best vs best teams (Cubs, Dodgers, Astros, Brewers) and seems to play down to lesser team (A’s, Giants, Pirates) which results in lots of close games and losses.

    Pitcher was great. Hopefully they start playing their best all the time.

  8. Centerfield

    I think the message to Iglesias is to be more aggressive and bring your best stuff. He has a tendency to start an inning with less than his best and then ramp it up after he allows a couple of base runners. His body language appears to indicate that he lacks confidence. I think the last 2 games are an attempt by DB to make a mental adjustment for this pitcher (kick in the rear). The analytics may not support it, but the eye test sure did.
    The first two HRs were GABP specials, but it plays the same for both teams. Also time to call up Reed before Amir’s arm falls off….