That’s three in a row down to defeat, all in extra innings, and all at Philadelphia. The Reds haven’t had the success in the win column this weekend, but they have shown a continued ability to battle. And they’ve shown it at the home of the defending NL Champions. Truthfully, I don’t think this weekend has been as much of a negative as most fans might think. The Phillies are a pretty good team and the Reds have gone toe-to-toe with them at their place with no backing down.
On Thursday, the Reds battled Brad Lidge to score a run in the top of the 9th to tie it and force extra innings. It was there that they battled out of a few tight situations before falling in the 12th. The bats went silent in the extra innings.
Mike Leake, the stellar rookie from Arizona State, was fantastic on Friday and made a bid to earn his first pro complete game. He held a 7-1 lead to the bottom of the 9th. That game went bust when he threw a 3-2 changeup to Greg Dobbs with 2-on and 1-out, as Dobbs hit it off the foul pole in right to cut the Reds lead to 7-5. Francisco Cordero then picked up his 6th blown save of the year when Cody Ransom hit one into the seats to tie it 7-7 and send it to extras. The Phillies were able to win it in the 10th thanks to a long blast from Ryan Howard.
Then came Saturday. Another rookie starter, Travis Wood, was mowing the Phillies down with no problem. He had a national stage via MLB Network and was battling the great Roy Halladay. Wood took a perfect game into the 9th inning. Problem was, the Reds bats were silenced by Halladay as well. Carlos Ruiz ended the perfect game and no-hit bid with a double to the left-center field gap to lead off the bottom of the 9th, but the Phillies didn’t score. At least, not yet. It was the 11th before Philly was able to win it 1-0, and Ruiz wound up scoring the winning run.
The biggest problem with the losses, like the Sunday loss to Cleveland in Cincy, is that the Reds are failing to take advantage when the Cardinals lose. The good thing, is that the Cardinals are having similar-type meltdowns as the Reds have had. St. Louis lost at Houston – AGAIN – so the Reds maintain their two game lead atop the NL Central. That means they are GUARANTEED to be in first place at the All-Star Break, and we’ll see how much love they get from the FOX crew of Joe Buck (hometown of St. Louis) and Tim McCarver (played catcher in St. Louis for over 10 seasons) on Tuesday night.
NOTES – The last time the Reds played three straight extra inning games was July 25-27, 1999 at San Francisco and Los Angeles. The last time the Reds played three straight extra inning game in the same series was May 5-7, 1980 at the Mets.
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!