Eugenio Suárez cracked a 2-run go-ahead homer in the bottom of the 2nd inning and the Cincinnati Reds pitching staff took care of the rest as the team picked up a win and a series sweep on Sunday afternoon over the Colorado Rockies. The Reds moved above the .500 mark for the first time since April 21st when they were 9-8 and in the middle of what would become a 7-game losing streak.
|Colorado Rockies (25-41)||2||6||0|
|Cincinnati Reds (32-31)||6||9||0|
|W: Hendrix (3-1) L: Senzatela (2-7)
|Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread|
The Reds hit the ball very hard in the bottom of the 1st inning but didn’t have much to show for it. But they kept hitting the ball hard in the 2nd inning and things began to come together for them. Tyler Naquin doubled, Joey Votto – who didn’t hit the ball hard – blooped a single down the left field line to tie the game up. Then Eugenio Suárez unloaded on a pitch for a 2-run homer into the left field stands to put Cincinnati ahead 3-1.
In the bottom of the 3rd inning Jesse Winker was hit by a pitch and Nick Castellanos doubled to the wall in left field to put the Reds in a good spot with one out and two men in scoring position, but a strikeout and a ground out stranded the two of them. The next time Winker came to the plate he doubled, but he was stranded in the 5th inning.
Cincinnati would threaten again in the 7th inning after Kyle Farmer was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and pinch-hitter Shogo Akiyama doubled off of the wall in right field to put two men in scoring position for the top of the Reds lineup. Jonathan India fell behind 0-2 but worked a walk to load the bases for Jesse Winker.
It was not at all how you would draw it up. Winker hit a chopper that literally hit the dirt in front of the plate off of the bat, but went over a drawn in infield, scored two, and a hustling Winker turned it into a 2-run double to make it 5-2. After Nick Castellanos struck out, Tyler Naquin hit a sacrifice fly on the first pitch he saw to make it 6-2.
Tony Santillan had a bit of a rough start to his big league career as he allowed a single and a ground-rule double to the first two batters he faced. Charlie Blackmon then hit a sacrifice fly to put the Rockies ahead 1-0 in the top of the 1st. Santillan limited the damage there, though. In the 2nd inning he walked the tight rope as he walked C.J. Cron and gave up a single to put runners on the corners but he got out of it with an outstanding play by Tucker Barnhart on a foul bunt pop up by the opposing pitcher and getting Raimel Tapia to ground out.
The 3rd inning felt huge at the time. Tony Santillan hit the first batter he faced and then a single put to men on with the middle of the Rockies lineup due up. The 24-year-old struck out Trevor Story and Ryan McMahon but then walked Brendan Rodgers on four straight pitches to load the bases. That prompted a mound visit from pitching coach Derek Johnson and catcher Tucker Barnhart prior to facing C.J. Cron. Santillan had to battle in the at-bat, but he got Cron to fly out to shallow right field to end the inning and hold onto a 3-1 lead.
In the 4th inning Santillan worked around a single. In the 5th inning he hit Trevor Story with a pitch and walked Brendan Rodgers to put two men on with two outs as his pitch count was climbing. Ryan Hendrix was up in the bullpen and seemed ready to go, but Derek Johnson made a mound visit and the Reds decided to stick with Santillan to try and get the final out of the inning as he faced C.J. Cron in the rain that had started earlier in the inning. He fell behind 2-0 before blowing a 94 MPH fastball up in the zone by Cron, but two balls followed and a walk loaded the bases and that was it as David Bell came to the mound to make a pitching change.
With Ryan Hendrix on the mound the rain continued to come down rather heavy as he faced off against Dom Nuñez. The two battled each other to reach a full count before Hendrix got Nuñez to swing over top of a nasty slider that would have otherwise been ball four as he stranded the bases loaded and walked off the mound as fired up as could be as he held onto a 3-1 lead. That left Tony Santillan with a final line of: 4.2IP, 5H, 1ER, 4BB, 5K.
Brad Brach came in for the 6th inning and he struck out the first two hitters he faced, but walked the third. With left-handed hitting Charlie Blackmon due up David Bell came out to bring in Amir Garrett. It took three pitches to send Blackmon back to the dugout and the inning was over as the lefty kept the score 3-1 in favor of Cincinnati.
Heath Hembree entered the game for the 7th and after a 3-pitch strikeout of Trevor Story it was Ryan McMahon crushing a solo homer to the power stacks to cut the Reds lead to 3-2. He would get Brendan Rodgers to fly out to deep left field, but walked C.J. Cron to put the go-ahead run at the plate, but was able to strike Dom Nuñez out to end the inning.
Lucas Sims pitched the 8th inning, picking up a strikeout, a fly out to center, and fly out to shallow right field to wrap up an 8-pitch frame. He returned for the top of the 9th to try and hold onto a 6-2 lead. Sims got a little help early on from Jesse Winker who made a sliding grab on a liner for the 1st out of the inning. Trevor Story struck out swinging before Ryan McMahon fly out to shallow center to end the game.
Notes Worth Noting
Heath Hembree's first 9 games with the Reds: 9.2IP, 1H, 2BB, 11K, 0.00 ERA.
Heath Hembree's next (and most recent) 9 games with the Reds: 9.1IP, 11H, 12ER (11.57 ERA), 4BB, 17K. https://t.co/Vx7gCiy2ty
— Doug Gray is fully vaccinated (@dougdirt24) June 13, 2021
Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds
Cincinnati Reds vs Milwaukee Brewers
Monday June 14th, 8:10pm ET
Vladimir Gutierrez (2-1, 2.65 ERA) vs Eric Lauer (1-2, 4.82 ERA)