The Detroit Tigers brought the big bats with them to Cincinnati. They hit four home runs on the day, and happened to be robbed of another one, as they picked up a 5-4 victory to open up the 3-game series against the Reds.

Final R H E
Detroit Tigers (40-48)
5 11 1
Cincinnati Reds (42-46)
4 7 0
W: Olson (3-8) L: Spiers (2-2) SV: Foley (14)
Box Score | Game Thread

After five easy outs for Carson Spiers he needed some real help from the defense behind him. He gave up a long fly ball to Gio Urshela, but Stuart Fairchild did what he has seemed to do quite a bit lately, and tracked the ball to the wall before leaping up and catching it to steal extra-bases and maybe a home run. He wasn’t as lucky in the 3rd inning when Parker Meadows hit a fly ball that landed 25 rows up the seats in right field. Colt Keith came up later in the inning with a home run of his own well into the stands in right to make it 2-0.

Reese Olson needed just 30 pitches to get through the first three innings for Detroit. But as the 4th inning was set to begin the sky opened up and it began to pour as the grounds crew rushed to get the tarp on the field. When the rain let up and the tarp came off of the field about 15 minutes later, Olson picked up there he left off for the Tigers and worked around a walk to keep Cincinnati off of the board in the 4th and 5th.

In the top of the 5th the Tigers played long ball once again. After a single by Matt Vierling it was Colt Keith hitting his second homer of the night as he slugged another 400+ foot home run more than halfway up the seats in right field, making it 4-0. Spencer Steer got one of those runs back with a 425-foot homer into the bleachers to cut the lead to three runs.

During the 6th inning the Reds put together a bit of a 2-out rally after Jonathan India singled, Elly De La Cruz walked, and then Jeimer Candelario singled to bring in India. That made it 4-2. It didn’t stay there very long as Riley Greene led off the 7th with a solo homer to put the Tigers back up by three runs.

Brent Suter kept the Tigers off of the board over the next two innings, keeping the score at 5-2 entering the bottom of the 9th inning. Elly De La Cruz, who had walked twice in the game, picked up an infield single on a high chopper to second base with one out to give the club a baserunner. He then stole second base, but Detroit challenged the play as they believed they got the tag down in time. After a long review the play stood and De La Cruz was standing on second base. A balk then moved him up to third base. Spencer Steer then hit a line drive off of the glove of a diving Matt Vierling and he picked up an infield RBI single.

Nick Martini followed up with a line drive into the right field corner that he turned into an RBI triple that cut the Tigers lead to 5-4. The Reds then sent Blake Dunn out to third base to pinch run for Martini. Tyler Stephenson hit a chopper to third base and Dunn went on contact, but Matt Vierling came up firing to the plate and Dunn was tagged out on a bang-bang play. Cincinnati challenged the call, but the call was confirmed and the Reds remained down by a run. Noelvi Marte followed up with a single into center to move Stephenson into scoring position and keep the game going. Two pitches later Santiago Espinal grounded out to end the game as the Tigers held on for a 5-4 win.

Key Moment of the Game

Matt Vierling throwing out Blake Dunn at the plate by a matter of inches in the bottom of the 9th to maintain a 1-run lead.

Notes Worth Noting

The Tigers 1-2-3 hitters went 7-13. The rest of their lineup went 4-24.

Spencer Steer was the only Red with more than one hit, though Elly De La Cruz got on base three times in the game.

With the loss by the Reds and a win earlier in the evening by the Pirates, Cincinnati dropped into 4th place in the division.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Detroit Tigers vs Cincinnati Reds

Saturday July 6th, 4:10pm ET

TBA vs Hunter Greene (5-4, 3.70 ERA)

39 Responses

  1. Ksdavis

    I have listened to the talking heads for the last month or so be ambivalent about Bell. You would think that early in the game when the best base stealer in the game gets on base, you would tell the next hitter to take a pitch or two to give said stealer a chance. But no, you let him swing away at the first pitch and ground into a DP. Time for Bell to go.

    • Mauired

      What’s the ambivalence about? At what point in six years has there been any evidence of Bell being a big league manager. If they get rid of him now, there is time to see him in the Little league world series where he belongs.

      • Ksdavis

        The talking heads don’t think it makes much of a difference. They claim a manager makes a difference in only 5 or so games a year. Yet here we are in year six with the teams making the same mistakes year after year, and the manager making bad decision after bad decision year after year.

  2. Jessecuster44

    Dunn’s lack of an aggressive secondary lead in the 9th cost the team, almost as much as the meatballs thrown by Spiers.

    Exciting finish. Get em tomorrow.

    • TR

      Travel fatigue affects all teams including the Reds. Still a good chance to take the next two and the series. Wins and defeats are a part of a long season.

    • Captain redsleg

      3rd base runner running on contact should have taken 3 steps as pitch was thrown….if they throw to 3rd the runner probably ly makes it home……can’t put in a pinch runner running on contact 2 steps off the bag……I’ve seen bad fundamentals cost this team repeatedly game after game….and that falls on the coaches…

  3. Indy Red Man

    Down on Stephenson big time. Puts himself in the hole 0-2 by chasing outside and he’s supposed to like to go to right. He doesn’t frame well and throws guys out about 2x a month. Average at best too offensively considering he plays in a bandbox and only has 6 hrs. Bell era Reds never squeeze never go the other way with big runs on 3b. Same old – different day

    • Jessecuster44

      RP got him by throwing off speed. Ty Steve tried a little bit too hard to be a hero. He hasn’t hit well in a minute.

    • Still a Red

      Steer took a outside center pitch to right a 100+ line drive in the 9th that would have tied game if it fell. You have to work with what the pitcher throws.

  4. LDS

    Not a good start to the home stand, especially against a rather poor team. The Reds really need to work on their “killer instincts “ – too often winning against good teams, only to collapse against the mediocre.

    • Ted Alfred

      It is a lack of focus…that comes from you know who.

      • Still a Red

        Oh come on guys…they almost pulled this one out…aggressive on the base paths…eldc dives across 1st base steals 2nd…triple by Martini…almost double opposite field by Steer..a disappointing loss but not due to lack of killer instinct or focus…aren’t you two tired of saying the same thing over and over…you aren’t going to get rid of Bell

      • Captain redsleg

        Exactly….fundamentals are lacking and that falls directly on the Coach

      • LDS

        Hey @StillARed, aren’t you tired of carrying Bell’s water? Aren’t you tired of losing? Or maybe you’re one of the overly optimistic that thought this was the year that Krall’s strategic plan and Bell’s secret knowledge merged to build the second incarnation of the Big Red Machine. The Reds performed exactly as expected. Listen to the team’s comments after the Yankee games and you could have predicted tonight’s outcome without too much effort. How they respond today will be interesting.

  5. Roger Garrett

    I get the contact play and evidently it was a real close play.Not sure if Dunn had the proper lead but thats on the coach to insure he is even with the 3rd baseman.Don’t know that but maybe he was.Tyler has to be better right there and after the Marte hit it came down to Espy and if thats all we had then thats all we had.Reds battled back but lost

    • Mauired

      That’s not all they had. They just brought up a lefty power hitter from Louisville and Bell inexplicably went with Santiago Espinal.

      • CharlieE

        Espinal was 1-20, and batting less than .100 against right handers since he hit that pitch homer, but yeah, for someone who is so obsessed with match-ups, Bell whiffs so often in those situations. As noted above, managers add little value plus or minus to a team, per stats, with their decisions, with good managers adding 3-5 wins a year, however, poor managers can account for 6-8 more loss a year on an extreme. I think anyone should realize where Bell falls within that spectrum.

  6. Jeff morris

    What did I learn we all learn playing farm league, little league, and babe ruth baseball. Ball hit in front of you, when you are at 3rd base, hit to either third base or short ,stop, you DO NOT RUN! Ball hit to second base or hit slow or medium to first base, then come home. If Dunn would have done that, the hit by Marte to center, he would have scored from 3rd base, and tied up the game.

  7. Jeff morris

    Ty Steve has to hit the ball the other way, and not pull the ball. Especially when the pitch was on the outside corner.

  8. Jeremiah

    I’m ok with the Dunn out. It was a bang bang play and the Tigers 3B and C made a clutch play. If the Reds dont send him, and Marte then had grounded out or flied out to end the game, probably a lot of us are thinking man he should have tried to go home on the previous play. I think the Reds baserunning overall is overly aggressive but this play was not bad in my opinion.

    The bigger thing is Stephenson just didnt do enough there to get the job done. He deserves a little credit for putting it in play but overall he doesnt get the job done there.

    • Harry Stoner

      You take that risk with the go ahead run or with two outs, not with one out and the tying run.

      Bell gets himself confused and ‘aggressive’ turns into ‘reckless’ and becomes ‘foolish’.

      And he’s the last person to be even aware of it.

      He’s too cocksure of his ‘managing’ and busy making excuses for his players and himself to reflect on these kinds of decisions.

    • Mauired

      I don’t think a lot of us watching the game thought he should have tried to score on a ground out.

      • Mauired

        And it wasn’t a clutch play by tigers. More like routine

      • Indy Red Man

        Sparky or Lou would’ve trusted his speedy runner to make the right read and try to score on the throw to first. You’re also talking about Morgan, Griffey Sr, Geronimo, Larkin, Davis, etc instead of a young rookie, but still the kid needs to be prepared by the coaching staff. Failure there somewhere….or every where. Just like our OFs scooping up a hit with no forethought on where to throw it? Fraley and Stuey have been playing long enough. Benson isn’t 21 either. Krall needs to see that we fail to play the game properly far too often. You can either fire the manager or the players

  9. Indy Red Man

    Well a guy can expect 8-2 on this homestand if you want, but their starter has #3-#4 stuff vs AAAA Spiers. Sunday Ashcraft vs Skubal who is probably an All Star. Col and Miami maybe not so much, but there are no cupcakes.

    We always fail to deliver the fundamentals offensively when we need it. Maile in that 1-0 loss vs the Cards…couldn’t get the squeeze down or hit the guy in. Stephenson poor effort tonight. Nobody but Freidl can actually bunt so that negates some of our speed. Freidl & Lodolo both treasure their signed copies of Nick Denzel’s best seller “1001 Nagging Injuries To Get Paid Without Working”. Can’t keep either one and we need them.
    Really looking at everything overall it’s fire Bell and also flip some guys that are 3+ years in and still can’t execute. You roll with the same guys and you’ll get the same thing

  10. Jim Walker

    This was a tough loss. I disagree with the blind run on contact strategy but don’t do not think it was a crazy off the wall call. Probably as many teams would have tried it as would not have tried.

    The real letdown was that Stephenson did not seem to be ready to give better accounting for himself at the plate. It is probably best to be looking for a certain pitch in a certain location and take a strike to start the PA than wave wildly like he did.

    • Still a red

      Sliders on outside edge in the strike zone are the ones you want to swing at if you want to go the other way. But no he didn’t get it done.

      • Jim Walker

        Those were really awkward swings though on the first 2. Ganeday shows them both about thigh high. The first pitch was almost in the middle of the plate. The second one was a tad higher than the first and very borderline to being outside. The third pitch was elevated to just under the belt and furthest outside (almost certainly would have been a ball but too close to risk).

        So basically he had what looked to be (per game day) a hung slider about belt high just off the plate and rolled on it instead of punching or lifting it.

  11. Old-school

    At the game, a couple observations.

    1.) crowd was great and the Friday nights with city connect ,young crowds, drone shows, fireworks displays are a hit. Atmosphere was outstanding.
    2.) Elly is a superstar and the face of this team in this city. Now. Easily the fan fav and more Elly jerseys than anyone by a long shot. I didn’t like the steal in 9th down 3 but Candy already hit into a 4-6-3 so I get it. He fraternizes with the opponents big time but I dont care. Keep him at SS. His range is absurd, his arm is amazing and the almost plays were incredible. He is electric.

    3.) Steer mashed that home run and gives you a tough Ab.
    4.) They fought back. i didnt think Dunn’s secondary lead off was great but it’s baseball. The Judge 5-4-3 dbp to end it the other night 3 feet one way or the other and that game outcome was different.

    4.) The bottom of the order- Martini,Stephenson,Marte,benson Fairchild and Espinal pinch hitter were 2-19 with 8K’s. Thats why this offense cant sustain anything. If Colt “Bergman” Keith can Launch 2 bombs in GABP, surely we can find better hitting somewhere after the 5 hole.

    5.) Wildcard starting to separate. Padres and Cards comfortably over .500 and Reds cant get back to .500 and Braves will be the top WC. Need a series win badly.

    Go Reds.

  12. JB

    Glad I went to bed. I was thinking that our “best” DH will play tomorrow. I missed him coming in to tonight’s game and doing his usual weak ground out to end a threat. Bottom of the order is terrible and will be until Bell tries something different or Krall can get somebody in here. If the first 4 don’t do anything then it’s basically over.

  13. Kevin H

    Well didn’t watch the game so really can’t comment on the play.

    Reading thr recap though and watching the video of Dunn sliding into home. He looks safe. Looks like his hand hits home plate as the tag is applied. Tie goes to runner. The reds run on the contact play who they are and again looking at the video to me it was right call. Better play by Tigers

    • Jim Walker

      The commentators (Apple TV+) kept referring to the sliding gloves as “oven mitts”. They wondered just how an ump was supposed to know when they actually touched a base versus being in the air above it,

      There were 2 sliding mitt replays in the 9th both upheld the call, EDLC safe at 2B and Dunn out at home. My old eyes thought both went the opposite to the call. based on the position of the “mitt”. I thought EDLC’s was in the air over the base but not touching when he was tagged and that Dunn brushed the tip of the plate just ahead of the tag.

      Such is life

  14. Kevin H

    So a question, when is this new gm gonna do something. Trade for a hitter or two. My goodness this organization at times is frustrating

  15. jmb

    Good to see Suter being used for multiple innings. He used to be a starter, so he should be able to be stretched out a bit. This means that once Lodolo returns, Montas can be traded. But 2 of Moll, Suter, and Wilson also should be traded, and Young called back up. And when Cruz and Farmer are traded, Legumina and Santillan can be called back up.

    • Kevin H

      Why would you trade Cruz and Farmer? They have been solid

    • Mauired

      The GM already stated Reds will probably be buyers if anything. No team sells 3 games out of playoffs in July.