It’s 2021 and pitching duels are dead. Except when they aren’t. And that’s what we saw on Wednesday afternoon in Cincinnati at Great American Ball Park as Sonny Gray and Dallas Keuchel went shutout-inning to shutout-inning for seven before turning the game over to the bullpens. Both sides performed well, but it was Reds who finally broke through with a Jesse Winker walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th inning.
|Chicago White Sox (16-13)
|Cincinnati Reds (14-15)||1||5||0|
|W: Sims (1-1) L: Hendriks (1-1)
|Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread|
Dallas Keuchel kept the Cincinnati Reds offense off-balance all day. The team had not struck out through six innings, but also only had two hits – a double by Jesse Winker in the 1st inning and a single by Tyler Naquin to lead off the 5th inning. Keuchel did pick up his first strikeout in the 7th, fanning Tyler Stephenson on a full count as he kept Cincinnati off of the board.
The Reds had a big opportunity in the bottom of the 9th inning with the bases loaded and two outs, but they couldn’t come through. The 10th inning began with Tucker Barnhart on second base and Cincinnati needing just one run as the White Sox came up short in their half of the inning. Nick Senzel singled into left, but Barnhart had to pause for a second to make sure the ball wasn’t caught, setting up Jesse Winker with runners on the corners. Winker came through against one of the best closers in the game as he lined a single into center field to end the game and give the Reds their 14th win of the year.
Unlike Dallas Keuchel, Sonny Gray went about his side of the pitching duel by striking out everyone. Well, not everyone, but Gray picked up eight strikeouts through 7.0 innings as he allowed just two hits – both singles – as he kept the game scoreless. After 90 pitches the Reds turned the scoreless game over to Tejay Antone to try and keep the White Sox off of the board the rest of the way.
After a 1-2-3 8th inning that featured two strikeouts, Tejay Antone returned for the 9th with the game still scoreless. He worked around a 1-out walk by getting an easy double play to end the inning and give the Reds a chance to walk the game off in the bottom of the 9th.
It turns out that the Reds didn’t get to walk things off in the 9th, so the game was turned over to Lucas Sims in the 10th. After a leadoff walk he induced a ground out and then got some help from Tony LaRussa and the White Sox. Reliever Liam Hendriks was the final out of the 9th inning and thus he began as the runner on 2nd base in the 10th. He advanced to third on the ground out. LaRussa called for a steal of second base and with an inexperienced runner in Hendricks at third, Tucker Barnhart was confident in gunning the ball to second to nail Leury Garcia for the second out. Sims then struck out Billy Hamilton to strand the runner at third and send the game to the bottom of the 10th.
Key Moment of the Game
Jesse Winker had runners on the corners in the bottom of the 10th inning of a scoreless game and came through with a walk-off single.
Notes Worth Noting
Joey Votto was hit by a pitch in the hand. He initially remained in the game, but was removed later with what the Reds called a “left thumb injury”.
Sonny Gray hasn’t allowed more than six hits in a game for 48 consecutive starts. That breaks the old MLB record of 47, which was also held by Sonny Gray after his last start.
Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds
Cincinnati at Cleveland
Friday May 7th, 7:10pm ET
Wade Miley (3-2, 2.67 ERA) vs Zach Plesac (2-3, 4.78 ERA)
Breaking on Twitter postgame that David Bell says Votto suffered a “broken left thumb” when HBP.
Further word was “no surgery (required)” But “it will be weeks: (prior to Votto’s return)
I said in the game thread now those that think Votto is washed up will get to see how the Reds fair without him.
I was on board with moving him down the lineup at the beginning of the year until he started heating up and shut me up.
Votto broken thumb. Sad.
I’ve thought of lots of options for replacing Votto at first, and the easiest (and my favorite) would be playing Stephenson there every day. That would involve the fewest moving parts.
I think Stephenson is best served by catching some days and observing Barnhart catching the other days. He should, in my opinion, be focusing on honing the skills he will need as a starting catcher and he can learn a lot in the dugout.
Who will it be…
Has Winker ever played 1B ?
I would expect Votto to go on IL for minimum 10 days and a call up from taxi or Louisville. How they line up will depend upon whom they call up.
Shogo off the IL, Senzel to 3B and Moose to 1B. Lineup of Senzel, Winker, Castellanos, Moose, Suarez, Naquin, Barnhart, India, P
I’m down with Lil Senzi on the dirt at either 3B or 2B, put India in the other spot and call it a day. Big Moose our new 1B for now
Shogo is going to play over Naquin.
With Votto out, I feel like the best way to get the best 8 on the field is to move Moose to 1B, India to 3B, and Senzel to 2B. Then have Naquin (and soon Shogo) hold down CF.
haha great minds and all of that
Totally with this 100%.
Solid win, considering if they don’t win in the bottom of the 10th Billy starts off the next inning at 2B and we know how quickly he can score. I also can’t believe LaRussa pitched to Winker instead of walking him to load the bases.
Tough break for Joey but the versatility the Reds have shown in the past week might really be coming in handy. Assuming Shogo is back within a week you can slide Moose over to 1B and put Senzel at 3B.
TLR the Great made an error in judgement
Makes it even sweeter
Really good win … although listening while driving for work gave me unpleasant flashbacks of Reds not being able to score in playoffs vs, the Braves.
What was LaRussa thinking in the 10th, trying to steal 2nd, with the possibility of Hamilton ending the inning by striking out (which he did)? Whether its Father Time or forgetting about how the park plays … teams can’t assist in ending innings at GABP like TLR did in that spot.
Move Moustakas to 1B, Suarez back to 3B … and try anyone not named Suarez at SS?
Tough luck on Votto injury … but this is a possible way to get Suarez out of SS while “saving face.”
Oh, and that hits record by Gray is amazing to me.
Jesse’s big hit and Joey’s unfortunate broken thumb aside, credit where credit is due: FABULOUS PITCHING TODAY — by both the starter and relievers. We’ve needed that.
Can’t believe there’s not more said, here or on video, of Barnhart throwing runner out trying to steal 2nd in the 10th…a real game changer there….seems to be treated ho-hum.
Oh it was huge but it was nice of TLR to try it and give Barney the chance, too!
I forgot that Tony La Russa, the old Reds nemesis, is the manager of the White Sox. That makes the walk-off win even better.
Apparently, LaRussa was not up on the extra-inning rule:
Music. Sweet music.
If I was the Reds, I would lock up Winker and Mayle up right now. Maybe Antone, also. I would even add a couple of years to Nick C’s and Gray’s contracts.
In order to stake any chances of getting into the post-season, Castillo shall join Gray and Mahle and improve his performance. Also, Suarez hitting is going nowhere and a decision shall be made soon, he’s now just a rally killer. Aside from him, position players are doing good, bench is deep and will get better when Shogo returns. The bullpen is halfway with Antone, Sims, Hembree, Hendrix, Fulmer and Doolittle, hopefully Garrett will get back on track.
Suarez at 6 is Bells mitigation. He wants to limit damage while saving face for a veteran. In reality Stephenson should have the sixth spot anytime he’s in the lineup. But for India’s own 15 game slump, I’d think Geno should be the 8 hole guy.
I think it’s safe to say that Reds have four legitimate candidates to the ASG in Castellanos, Winker, Antone and Barnhart.
If he gets back on track, I’d think Mahle has a punchers chance
Three weeks and no Votto bit at least there is an off-day before this thirty game stretch so the FO can work with Bell to figure it out.
Castellanos will not want to play 1st. He wants to play OF.
Winker profiles perfectly but has next to no experience there.
Moose has 10 games last year there and a few more over his career but now it becomes a matter of displacing 2 guys as Senzel on the IF makes more sense than making Farmer the full time sub at 3rd (or SS and letting Geno float back).
Shogo will be back soon and the Moose/Senzel move would be better with that OF depth.
But for the time being Winker or Stephenson cutting their teeth over there would maximize the offense without Votto.