Hunter Greene’s velocity was way down, he struggled with his control, and the Reds bats remained missing in action as Cincinnati dropped their 10th consecutive game since Phil Castellini’s infamous comments, falling 4-2 to the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday night.
|St. Louis Cardinals (8-4)
|Cincinnati Reds (2-12)
|W: Matz (2-1) L: Greene (1-2) SV: Gallegos (4)
|Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread
Cincinnati looked like they were getting something going in the 1st with singles by Brandon Drury and Joey Votto, but both of them were stranded when a strikeout ended the inning. The next inning they had another little rally going after 1-out singles by Alejo Lopez and Aramis Garcia put runners on the corners, but Colin Moran grounded into an inning ending double play.
After a quiet few innings it was Aramis Garcia leading off the 5th with a walk and moving up to second on a hit by Colin Moran. A double play would erase Moran on the bases, but it set up Brandon Drury with an RBI opportunity and he came through with a liner into left field to put the Reds on the board and cut into the Cardinals lead, making it a 4-1 game. The next inning saw Cincinnati get two men on with one out after TJ Friedl walked, but both runners were stranded after a ground out and a pop up ended the inning.
Only Joey Votto reached base – he was hit by a pitch – in the next two innings, setting up the Reds to try and score three runs in the bottom of the 9th to tie things up, or do one better and win it. Alejo Lopez led off the inning with a single. After a fly out by Aramis Garcia, Colin Moran doubled to put two men on for Kyle Farmer. The Reds shortstop grounded out, but Lopez scored to make it 4-2. That was all they’d get as Brandon Drury flew out to center to end the game.
Things didn’t quite seem right from the very start for Hunter Greene. After averaging 100 MPH on his fastball in his first two outings he was throwing 95-96 MPH and topped out at 97 in the 1st inning that saw him allow a run. The velocity didn’t get better in the next few innings, but he kept the Cardinals off of the board in the 2nd and 3rd innings. But in the 4th he started things off with a walk and a hit batter. After getting a fly out, Dylan Carlson grounded one hard down the 1st base line that went off the glove of a sliding Joey Votto for a single to load the bases. That was all for Greene on the day as Jeff Hoffman came out of the bullpen to take over. Greene finished the day throwing 66 pitches with just 36 strikes, having walked four batters and hitting another, while striking out three.
Two pitches after entering the game Hoffman allowed a 2-run single to Paul Goldschmidt to make it 3-0. He gave up another run in the top of the 5th as St. Louis extended their lead. Luis Cessa took over in the 6th and tossed a shutout inning. Dauri Moreta was summoned out for the 7th inning and like Cessa before him, worked around a hit in a shutout frame. Alexis Diaz followed up with a perfect 8th inning to hold the Cardinals lead at 4-1. Buck Farmer came out for the 9th inning and worked around a single and a walk to hold the score and give the Reds offense one last chance to get things going. They tried, but could only muster one run as they fell 4-2.
Key Moment of the Game
Jeff Hoffman entering the game to immediately give up a 2-run single to Paul Goldschmidt to put the Cardinals up 3-0 in the 4th inning.
Notes Worth Noting
Hunter Greene’s top fastball velocity was 97.2 MPH and the lowest was 93.4 MPH. He averaged just 95.8 MPH on the pitch after averaging 100 MPH through his first two starts. This warrants keeping an eye on.
Joey Votto reached base three times – picking up two singles and he was hit by a pitch in his last plate appearance.
Alexis Diaz is now through six outings to begin his career without allowing a run.
Since Phil Castellini asked fans “sell the team to who?” on Opening Day, the Reds have lost 10 straight games by a combined score of 63-20, they’ve had a lead for 18 pitches, and the team owns the worst record in baseball at 2-12. pic.twitter.com/zPVgjHCpdq
— Brandon Saho (@BrandonSaho) April 23, 2022
Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds
St. Louis Cardinals vs Cincinnati Reds
Saturday April 23rd, 4:10pm ET
Daniel Hudson (0-1, 7.71 ERA) vs Tyler Mahle (1-1, 7.82 ERA)