The Cincinnati Reds were led by a rare strong start at home by Tyler Mahle and a big grand slam from Kyle Farmer in a 9-1 win over the Washington Nationals on Sunday afternoon. The win guaranteed a non-losing season for the Reds as they picked up their 81st win of the season with six games remaining.
|Washington Nationals (64-92)||1||4||0|
|Cincinnati Reds (81-75)||9||14||2|
|W: Mahle (13-6) L: Rogers (2-1)
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Cincinnati tried to get the offense going in the 1st inning when Nick Castellanos walked and Eugenio Suárez doubled, but a line out ended the inning and the threat that the Reds had going. In the 4th inning a walk from Delino DeShields and a single from Jose Barrero once again put two men on for the Reds but they failed to cash in once again.
With the Nationals taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the 5th it must have set off the alarm for the Cincinnati hitters who went to work. Jonathan India led off with a double and then Tyler Stephenson and Nick Castellanos hit back-to-back homers to put the Reds up 3-1. The next inning the Reds went back to work. TJ Friedl led off with a pinch-hit single and Tyler Stephenson would later double. With two men on, Washington opted to load the bases by intentionally walking Nick Castellanos with one out. At first the play worked out as Eugenio Suárez struck out, but Ryne Harper hung a breaking ball to Kyle Farmer and he planted a grand slam into the upper deck in left field to make it a 7-1 game.
Cincinnati wasn’t quite done on the day. In the bottom of the 8th inning they went back to work. Delino DeShields had a 1-out single and scored on a double by Jose Barrero. Aristides Aquino came off of the bench to pinch hit for Amir Garrett and walked. Jonathan India followed with a walk of his own to load the bases. Tyler Stephenson hit a sacrifice fly to pad the lead and make it 9-1. That was more than enough for the win.
You know the story – Tyler Mahle can’t pitch in Cincinnati. He entered the day as the only pitching in Major League Baseball history with 30 or more starts in a season and an ERA under 2.00 on the road and over 6.00 (or 5.00) at home. That didn’t matter at all on Sunday as Mahle dominated the Nationals lineup. Washington’s lone run against Mahle came in the top of the 5th inning and it was unearned after a fielding error by Jonathan India. The righty finished his out by giving up just three hits and walking two batters while striking out six. Among those six was his 200th strikeout of the season.
In the 7th inning the Reds turned the game over to rookie Dauri Moreta. After dominating in the minor leagues all season, Cincinnati finally called him up earlier this week from Triple-A. He walked the first batter of the inning, but worked around it and ended the inning with his first big league strikeout. Amir Garrett followed up with a hitless 8th inning to keep the score 7-1 in favor of the Reds.
Jeff Hoffman took over for the 9th inning, holding an 8-run lead. He gave up a leadoff double to Luis García before retiring the next two batters. But then he walked Andrew Stevenson and Lane Thomas to load the bases. A wild pitch would then bring the Nationals second run of the game across the plate, but Hoffman struck out Alcides Escobar to end the game.
Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds
Pittsburgh Pirates vs Cincinnati Reds
Monday September 27th, 1:10pm ET
TBA vs Reiver Sanmartin (MLB Debut)