The season is a marathon, not a sprint, and it contains many twists and turns. Certainly, the week just ended had a few of those for Cincinnati. It was nice to see the Reds bounce back from their nightmare on Peachtree Street to take two of three from the Indians. It allowed Reds fans to exhale a bit, even if the team made it into first place again on Saturday, but then dropped back down to 2nd on Sunday.
For the week, Cincinnati was 4-3. The Reds swept Milwaukee at home, dropped two heartbreakers at Atlanta, then took two of three at Cleveland. Cincinnati returns home for a seven-game homestand on Monday night. The first four games are with Pittsburgh. The last three are against Houston over Memorial Day weekend. The Reds are 18-8 in their last 26 games.
The biggest news for the Reds concerns the condition of Homer Bailey. Bailey had to leave Sunday’s game early with tightness in his shoulder. He’ll be examined Monday by Dr. Tim Kremchek. If he needs time off, I look for the Reds to call up Sam LeCure. LeCure pitched a 1-hitter for Louisville on Saturday night and has been better than rookie sensation Aroldis Chapman all season. Chapman also has been having blister problems on his finger, so it doesn’t look good for him to be promoted. Keep in mind, too, that Edinson Volquez is continuing his rehab and suspension in Arizona, and he’s expecting to be ready to pitch again in July.
As far as Sunday’s game, the Reds really should’ve been beaten a lot worse by the Tribe. Cleveland left a dozen on base, and it seemed like they were always threatening. Micah Owings pitched in relief of Bailey and, even though he didn’t allow a single run, he walked five in 2.2 innings.
The Reds took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first on the first of two Scott Rolen homers on the day. The Indians came back in the bottom of the first with a pair of their own, and would never trail again. They took the lead in the 3rd, but Rolen tied the game in the 6th. Rolen now has 10 homers on the season. He had just 11 all of last year, 11 in 2008, and only seven in 2007. If he can stay healthy, he could have stats similar to what he had for St. Louis in 2006 when he hit .296 with 22 home runs and 95 RBI. He’s on pace for 36 HR and 99 RBI.
The game’s big at-bat came in the bottom of the 6th. Cleveland had runners on the corners with two out and Jhonny Perralta at the plate against Daniel Ray Herrera. Perralta lined a 1-2 fastball to left to score Trevor Crowe with what turned out to be the game-winning run.
“(Herrera) had Perralta eating out of his hand with scroogies,” said Baker, “and tried to sneak a fastball by him on the inside, but it came back over the plate. He just made a bad pitch on Jhonny.”
The Reds offense had a chance to tie it in the 7th with runners on 1st and 2nd, but Tony Sipp got Joey Votto out on a liner to left to end the inning and the Reds wouldn’t be able to answer for the rest of the game.
“We had action on winning this one today, and we really wanted to sweep here,” said a disappointed Baker. “But (the season) is about winning series.”
And that’s what the Reds did in their weekend in Cleveland, answering any questions about if the team would slump after the stunning walk-off loss at Atlanta on Thursday afternoon.
NOTES: There is word out that the Astros are shopping Roy Oswalt. The Reds are said to be interested, even though they beat the righthander on April 29 at Minute Maid Park. Oswalt is probably not interested in the Reds, however. He wants to pitch for a team close to his home in Mississippi and is said to be willing for a trade to St. Louis, Atlanta, or Tampa Bay. With the major league service time that he has, he could veto any trade he doesn’t like.
About the Author
Written by Dave Allen
I'm a lifelong Cincinnati sports fan who has been following the Reds and Bengals ever since I can remember. My first Reds game was Game 6 of the '72 World Series and my first Bengals game was an October 1975 clash with the Steelers. I've been involved in sports media since Junior High, when I assisted with scores for Bob Trumpy SportsTalk in 1979 on WLW Radio. My biggest Reds highlight came in 1998 when I was chosen to be the public address announcer at Riverfront Stadium (then called Cinergy Field) for Opening Day and the entire first homestand. I am thrilled to be involved with PSB and I hope you enjoy my entries!