Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Lee, Phillies Blank Cincy Again

Lee improved to 15-7 with the victory

Behind a strong outing from Cy Young candidate Cliff Lee, Philadelphia blanked host Cincinnati (67-69) for the second consecutive night at Great American Ball Park, 3-0. The Reds look to avoid a four-game sweep tomorrow with first pitch slated for 12:35 PM.

But first, here's the good, the bad and some notables on Wednesday's "titanic struggle":

The Good:
-Dontrelle Willis recorded his seventh quality start in his last eight outings. The Reds left-hander held the Phillies to three runs and five hits before exiting with two outs in the top of the seventh.
-Drew Stubbs collected a couple of base hits to break up a previous 1 for 9 stretch.
-The Reds won't have to face a former Cy Young Award Winner tomorrow. Instead they'll settle to take their swings off of rookie Vance Worley (9-1, 2.65 ERA).
-Help is on the way. Tomorrow marks the first day of the 40-man roster expansion and these players are expected to get the callup.

The Bad:
-Willis walked five and failed yet again to record his first major league win of the season.
-Cincinnati pitching surrendered three hits to the Phillies 7-hole hitter (Carlos Ruiz).
-The Reds were shutout for the eighth time this season (second straight game) and have not scored in 20 consecutive innings.
-With his 0 for 3 night at the dish, Paul Janish is now hitless in his last 25 at-bats.
-Brandon Phillips' modest 13-game hitting streak came to an end after his 0 for 4 performance..
-The Redlegs gave their faithful fans hope in the bottom of the ninth, but that hope was quickly dashed as pinch-hitter Yonder Alonso popped out to third with the bases loaded to end the game.

News & Notes: September Callups, Rolen & More

  • San Diego plucked Triple-A OF Jeremy Hermida outright from the Reds' waivers list on Wednesday. Hermida - an International League All-Star in 2011 - hit .319 with 17 homers and 55 RBI during his time in Louisville this season.
  • Hermida's departure puts Cincinnati's 40-man roster at 39 just a day before the rosters are set to expand. His spot will likely be taken by top catching prospect Devin Mesoraco. Mesoraco is hitting .289/.371/.484 with 15 HR and 71 RBI this year for the Bats. He has also thrown out 26% (28-80) of potential base stealers.
  • Other likely September 1st callups include 3B Juan Francisco, RHP Carlos Fisher, RHP Jared Burton, LHP Matt Maloney, INF Chris Valaika, and LHP Jeremy Horst, according to's Mark Sheldon.
  • Chris Heisey (strained oblique) took batting practice with the team on Tuesday and is expected to be activated from the 15-day DL on Thursday.
  • On Scott Rolen's rehab back from shoulder surgery. “He looks pretty good,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “He looks freer. I’m sure he doesn’t have the strength and the timing he’d like to have. But he looks a lot freer. He can push his hands back. He wasn’t able to get in his hand position in about three years.”
  • Today is the final day for the Head & Shoulders Hats Off Movement contest. If you're on Twitter, remember to use the hastag #HatsOffCIN in your tweets to help the Reds win the grand prize of $50,000 -- which would go toward funding youth league baseball in the city. Entering today the Reds trailed the first-place Giants by about 400 tweets (25,362-24,997).

Lineup & Notes vs. Phils (8/31)

Dontrelle Willis takes the hill tonight in search of his first major league victory of the season. He will go against Philadelphia's Cliff Lee (14-7, 2.71 ERA) who own's baseball's best ERA during the month (0.58). All the action begins at 7:10 PM EST.

Here's a look at Dusty Baker's stating lineup and some notes on the Wednesday evening contest:

Phillips 4
Sappelt 7
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Cairo 5
Stubbs 8
Hernandez 2
Janish 6
Willis 1

-The Reds have lost 12 of 13 games to the Phillies dating back to June of last season.
-Philadelphia's 39-24 road record is the best in the National League.
-In 11 lifetime starts against Philly, Willis is 3-6 with an ERA of 6.88. It's his first start against them since 2007 when he was a member of the Florida Marlins.
-Regarding not getting that elusive first win, "That's all you can ask for," Willis said. "I'm not really concerned about victories. They come in spurts. I like the way I'm throwing the ball and competing."

MINOR Details from 8/30/11

Louisville 2 Columbus 1
Matt Maloney (7-1) threw eight innings of one run baseball to get the win and lower his ERA to 2.99 on the season. Brad Boxberger got his 5th save of the year with a scoreless ninth. Juan Francisco went 2-3 with two RBI, while Jeremy Hermida drove in one run.

MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco went 1-4 at the plate.

Carolina 7 Montgomery 3
Curtis Partch struck out seven in 6.2 innings of work where he allowed just three earned. Brandon Hynick (4-3) got the win pitching 1.1 innings of hitless baseball and Donnie Joseph (8) got the save. Eric Campbell hit a three run shot, while Cody Puckett chipped in with two RBI. Didi Gregorius and Bill Rhinehart each had one.

Bakersfield 11 San Jose 6
Tim Crabbe (5-5) was the winner hurling seven scoreless and striking out eight while surrendering just one hit. Devin Lohman hit a three run home run and Dayne Read had two RBI. Andrew Means, Ryan LaMarre, Brodie Greene, Chris Richburg, Alex Buchholz, and Carlos Mendez all had one RBI, leaving Catcher Jordan Wideman as the only starter who didn't have a hit or RBI, although he did walk three times.

Dayton 3 West Michigan 2
Drew Hayes (2-2) got the win pitching the final two innings without allowing a hit. Donald Lutz had a big night with two solo shots, including the walkoff in the bottom of the tenth. Frank Pfister also had an RBI. Billy Hamilton was 0-5.

Helena 6 Billings 4
Wes Mugarain (4-5) was the losing pitcher giving up five runs, all unearned, in six innings. Robert Maddox had a two run shot, while Kyle Waldrop added a solo homer. Juan Perez also had an RBI.

AZL Giants 9 AZL Reds 3
Justice French (0-1) took the loss in the final game of the season. He allowed five earned in 5.1 innings. Steven Selsky, Brennan May, and Josef Terry accounted for the Reds' three RBI.

Juan Perez (.346, 2 HR, 21 RBI in AZL) was named to the AZL All-Star Squad. Perez is currently playing at Billings.

Quotes from last night's Debacle

Here are some quotes after Philadelphia's 9-0 blowout win over Cincinnati on Tuesday:
  • On the strength of the Phillies pitching staff -"Their pitching staff is where it's at," Bronson Arroyo said after the Reds lost for the 12th time in 13 games to Philadelphia. "When you've got three guys that could probably win the Cy Young and be as consistent as they've been all year, it's very hard to beat those guys on a consistent basis."
  • Roy Halladay on his start Tuesday night - "I felt fresh. I felt like my location early on wasn't great. I got into a rhythm as the game went on."
  • Halladay on his base-clearing double in the sixth - “I was cheating bad and I still hit it down the first-base line. Maybe it did help a little bit, otherwise I would have hit it in the stands. It didn’t help a lot.”
  • Dusty Baker on Halladay's 3-run double - "We make an error and the first pitch is out over the plate," Baker said. "That was a mistake there that ended up costing us four runs, especially from the pitcher in Halladay that's hitting .100. In that situation, we just have to make a better pitch than that. After that, the gates opened."
  • Arroyo on his 2011 pitching performance - “I probably had been more frustrated in the past. Going 9-15 with 22 quality starts in ’07 wasn’t real fun. It’s more frustrating when you continue to pitch well like Cueto and Leake have and don’t win ballgames. I haven’t really matched the quality starts I’ve had over the past five seasons so it’s a little easier to swallow. Regardless, you’d like to go out and perform better than you have.”

This Date in Reds Baseball History

The accounts of both these happenings come courtesy of Redleg Journal, which is co-authored by Greg Rhodes and John Snyder.

Palace of the Fans
August 31st, 1904 - Incensed at the verbal abuse directed towards him by Reds fan during the first game of a double header at the Palace of the Fans (the Reds home park at the time), Giants catcher Frank Bowerman punches Alfred Hartzell, a Northside resident who taught music in the Cincinnati Public School system. Vice Mayor Harry Gordon ordered Bowerman's arrest, and the player was escorted to the police station by a squad of officers. He was released when Hartzell, who received a cut on the jaw, refused to file charges. The Reds lose both games of the double header by scores of 3-2 and 4-1.

August 31st, 1939 - The Reds purchase 37-year old outfielder Al Simmons from the Braves. He appeared in just nine games and batted .143 (3-21) for the Reds at the end of '39 campaign. He played in parts of four more seasons in the majors before calling it quits as a member of the Philadelphia Athletics in 1944. Simmons would later be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953 after amassing 2,927 hits and posting a .334 career average.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Phillies Stuff Arroyo, Reds 9-0

Halladay stifled Reds hitters once again on Tuesday

The Phillies (85-46) shellacked host Cincinnati (66-67) en route to an easy, 9-0 win Tuesday night at Great American Ball Park. Roy Halladay worked seven, scoreless innings of two-hit ball to improve his record to 16-5 on the year.

Here's a look at the good, the bad and some notables on the lopsided affair:

The Good:
-Brandon Phillips extended his hitting streak to 13 games after singling in his first at-bat.
-Joey Votto reached base three times (two via hits) including tallying his team-leading 30th double of the season.
-Despite facing one of the most prolific strikeout pitchers in the game today, Drew Stubbs managed to avoid building upon his MLB lead in strikeouts (177). It marked only the fourth time in the month of August in which the 26-year old did not strikeout in a game.

The Bad:
-Cincinnati's record dropped below .500 again (67-68).
-Bronson Arroyo got knocked around like a pinata. He's now 1-7 all-time versus the Phillies and his season ERA is at an astronomical 5.13 after allowing five earned runs in 5 1/3 innings tonight. He also allowed two homers to raise his season total to 36 -- the most allowed of ANY pitcher in MLB.
-The Reds were outhit 11-4, let alone outscored by a margin of nine.
-After an 0 for 2 performance at the dish, Fred Lewis now has just one hit in his last 18 at-bats.
-After his outing on Tuesday, Sam LeCure's ERA for the month now stands at 7.78 (16.33 IP).
-Four Reds struckout two times each (Bruce, Frazier, Hanigan, Cairo).
-Cincy still has two games in the series left to play against these powerhouse Phillies. One against Cy Young candidate Cliff Lee (14-7) and the other versus rookie phenom Vance Worley (9-1)

The Notables:
-Philadelphia has now won 12 of their past 13 games against Cincinnati dating back to June, 2010.
-It is the seventh time the Redlegs have been shutout this season.

Dontrelle Willis clears Waivers

Willis has been the victim of tough luck in his 9 starts.

Reds left-hander Dontrelle Willis has cleared waivers according to a tweet sent out earlier today by's Jon Morosi. Willis is now eligible to be traded to any team should Cincinnati find a willing suitor.

The 29-year old is set to become a free agent in the offseason after signing a one-year, minor-league deal with the Reds prior to 2011.

Although he has yet to win a game for Cincy in nine appearances (0-3), he has recorded a quality start in six of his last seven outings. The upbeat and excuberant Willis has also shown prowess at the plate as evidenced by his .429 (10-21) average, one homerun, and two sacrifice bunts.

Should he continue to pitch the way he has for the last month of the season, he could garner interest from several MLB team during the offseason free-agency period -- including the Reds.

Overall, the two-time All-Star and former Rookie of the Year ('03) is 71-66 with a 4.11 ERA in nine big league seasons.

He joins current teammates Ramon Hernandez, Bronson Arroyo and Bill Bray on the list of players who have cleared waivers.

Lineup & Notes vs. Phils (8/30)

Cincinnati (67-67) looks to even the series at one game a piece tonight when they send Bronson Arroyo (8-10, 5.02 ERA) to the hill to battle Cy Young candidate Roy Halladay (15-5 ,2.56 ERA). First pitch is set to begin at 7:10 PM EST at GABP. Here's the starting lineup for the home team as well as some notes:

Phillips 4
Renteria 6
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Cairo 5
Stubbs 8
Hanigan 2
Arroyo 1

-The Reds are 1-11 in their last 12 games against the Phillies dating back to last season.
-Fred Lewis has just one hit in his last 16 at-bats.
-Bronson Arroyo is 1-6 with a 7.13 ERA in nine career starts against Philadelphia. He has lost five consecutive decisions against them dating back to 2001.
-Chris Heisey smacked a homer in his rehab assignment for Triple-A Louisville on Monday. He is now 1 for 8 in three games.

Minor League News & Notes

Louisville Bats
Tonight is Dog Day at the Park, as well as $1 hot dogs and Pepsi AND Kraft Singles buy one ticket get one free night with a package wrapper!

MVP Package! There's not much time left to take advantage of this deal but you can get a bobblehead featuring Joey Votto and Josh Hamilton commemorating their 2010 MVP seasons, as well as their time with the Bats. In 2007, the Bats has both of the league MVPs on one team.

Carolina Mudcats
Henry Rodriguez was placed on the DL after breaking his ankle in Sunday's game. He was leading all Reds' minor leaguers with 165 hits and 81 RBI. Jake Kahaulelio was activated from the DL to take his spot.

Bakersfield Blaze
It's also Kraft Singles Tuesday Ticket night in Bakersfield. Bring a Kraft singles wrapper and get buy one get one free tickets.

Dayton Dragons
Donald Lutz and Drew Hayes were selected by fans as the Dragons' Players of the Month for August.

Lutz in August: .369, 1 HR, 26 RBI
Hayes in August: 6-6 on saves, 0.87 ERA

Also, the Dragons clinched the Midwest League Eastern Division second half title two nights ago with their 6-0 win over West Michigan. It is their third division title in history, and grants them their first playoff appearance since 2008. The first round of the playoffs will begin Wednesday, September 7 at Fifth Third Field in Dayton with a best of three series between Dayton and Lansing.

Billings Mustangs
Third baseman Sean Buckley was named to the Pioneer League All-Star Team. At the time of the announcement Buckley was hitting .293 with 14 HR and 41 RBI.

AZL Reds
The Reds are currenlty 31-25, three games back of the AZL Dodgers in the AZL Central standings. They will finish their season vs. the AZL Giants today.

MINOR Details from 8/29/11

Columbus 11 Louisville 2
Daryl Thompson (3-3) gave up eight runs, five earned, in just 2/3 of an inning for the loss. Chris Heisey got his first hit, a solo home run, since beginning rehab with the Bats and Kris Negron also had an RBI.

MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco went 1-4

Carolina 8 Montgomery 3
Pedro Villarreal (7-3) pitching six innings giving up just one earned, while striking out six to get the win. Neftali Soto hit a two run shot for his 30th home run of the season. Josh Fellhauer had two RBI of his own, and Miguel Rojas, Eric Campbell, and Bill Rhinehart had an RBI each.

High Desert 7 Bakersfield 6
Christopher Manno (0-1) pitching 1.2 innings after blowing the save and took the loss allowing one earned run. Jorge Jimenez had two RBI, while Mark Fleury and Ryan LaMarre chipped in with one each.

West Michigan 5 Dayton 1
Stalin Gerson (5-2) gave up two earned runs over five innings to get the loss. Billy Hamilton drove in the only run and stole his 95th base of the season.

The Billings Mustangs were off on Monday.

AZL Dodgers 5 AZL Reds 4
Cesar Caceres (1-1) took the loss giving up an earned run, while pitching the last 3.2 innings of the game. Brandon Dailey and Yimmy Lopez each had an RBI.

The Reds will close their season today against the AZL Giants.

On This Day in Reds History

"The Officer" Rob Dibble
August 30th, 1992 - Reds pitcher Tim Belcher retires the last 23 batters to face him, but is removed from the game in the ninth inning in favor of closer Rob Dibble with a 3-1 lead over the Mets at Shea Stadium. Dibble then walks two batters before allowing a three-run homer to Bobby Bonilla resulting in a 4-3 Redlegs defeat in front of a live national audience on Sunday Night Baseball.

Cincinnati wore 1962-throwback uniforms during the game on "Nostalgia Night". Dibble reportedly tore his to pieces after the game in disgust of allowing the homer. A week later, the Mets billed the Reds $1,600 for damages caused by the furious reliever to the vistors' clubhouse.

August 30th, 1978 - The Reds issue rain checks for the first time since Riverfront Stadium opened back in June, 1970 when a steady rain postpones the scheduled game against Pittsburgh.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Victorino's slam pushes Phils past Reds

This image tells it all from the Reds perspective on Monday

The Reds (67-67) got a taste of just how good the Philadelphia (84-46) pitching staff is on Monday, falling to the visiting Phillies 3-2 at Great American Ball Park. Shane Victorino's 15th homer of the year broke a 1-1 tie in the top of eighth -- a lead the Phillies would not relinquish. The loss snaps a modest 4-game winning streak for Cincy.

Here's a look at the good, the bad and a few notables on the contest:

The Good:
-Homer Bailey turned in another solid outing. The native Texan fanned nine, walked zero and gave up three runs before exiting after the eighth. He has lasted seven innings or longer in three of his last four starts.
-The Reds caught a lucky break in the bottom of the fourth as Hunter Pence lost his footing and allowed a run-scoring triple to Brandon Phillips.
-Speaking of @DatDudeBP, Phillips extended his hitting streak to 12 after banging out a pair of hits. The streak is the longest by a Red this season.
-Ryan Hanigan pitched in a couple of singles and is now 6 for 10 in his last three games.
-Nick Masset escaped an outing without giving up at least one run for the first time in his last four appearances.
-The trio of Bailey, Masset and Bill Bray did not allow a single base on balls.

The Bad:
-Rookie Dave Sappelt continues to struggle after striking out three times, although he did record an infield single in the bottom of the eighth.
-The Cincinnati offense could only muster two runs and six hits, albeit to the league's top pitching staff.
-Making his first career start at third base, Yonder Alonso had a night to forget at the plate. The former Miami Hurricane went 0 for 4 with a hat trick (3 K's).
-Two other Reds also had 0 for 4 nights...Drew Stubbs and Edgar Renteria.

The Notables:
-Cincy lost by one-run for the league-leading 29th time this season.
-Cole Hamels remains undefeated against the Reds in his career (8-0 in 10 starts).
-The Reds haven't won a game played on Monday since June 27th (0-6).

Hunter Pence gets hit by Sniper?

Watch as the Reds benefit from Hunter Pence's misfortunate tumble on this fly ball:

Lineup & Notes vs. Phils (8/29)

Cincinnati (67-66) plays host to the Philadelphia Phillies (83-46) this week for a 4-game set at Great American Ball Park. Homer Bailey (13-7, 4.44 ERA) gets the ball for game one opposite of Cole Hamels (7-5, 2.62 ERA) -- who's making his first start since going on the disabled list August 12th. Here's the Reds lineup and a few notes for Monday's 7:10 EST contest:

Phillips 2B
Sappelt LF
Votto 1B
Bruce RF
Alonso 3B (first career start)
Stubbs CF
Renteria SS
Hanigan C
Bailey P

-Philadelphia has won 10 out of their last 11 games against Cincy dating back to last season.
-The Reds are seeking to win their fifth in a row, which would tie a season-high.
-Brandon Phillips is hitting .138 (4-29) lifetime against Hamels.
-Cincinnati has not won a game played on Monday since June 27th (TB). They are 0-5 during that span.
-The Phillies own the National League's best road record at 37-24.

Who's Your Pick for Reds Hall of Fame?

During the entire month of August, Reds fans everywhere are getting the chance to send a former Reds player to the Reds Hall of Fame. Among the possible choices include RHP Jeff Brantley (1994-97), 1B Sean Casey (1998-05), LHP John Franco (1984-89), RHP Danny Graves (1997-05), 1B Hal Morris (1990-97, 99-00), OF Paul O'Neill (1985-92), OF Reggie Sanders (1991-98), and RHP Scott Sullivan (1995-03).

To be eligible for the fan vote a player must have played in at least three seasons for the Reds within the last 13 years and be at least three years removed from playing in their last MLB game.

Fans can vote up to a maximum of three players per ballot and can submit 25 ballots per e-mail address. The voting ends at 11:59 PM EST on August 31st, 2011. The player receiving the most votes will be inducted as part of the Reds Hall of Fame's Class of 2012. You can access the official ballot by following this link.

In addition to the player selected by Reds fans, the Reds Hall of Fame's Veterans Committee will review the candidacies of Reds players, managers, and executives whose careers ended more than 13 years ago. Candidates selected for election by the Veterans Committee will join the fans' choice to comprise the Reds Hall of Fame Class of 2012.

With that in mind, here's a look at my top three choices for the fan vote:

3) John Franco - Played six seasons with the Reds; 3-time All-Star; 6th lowest career ERA in franchise history (2.49); led NL in saves in 1988 (39); second on Reds all-time saves list (148).
2) Danny Graves - Played nine seasons in Cincinnati; 2-time All-Star; Reds all-time saves leader (182); team MVP in 2000; Lou Gehrig Memorial Award recipient in 2002; member of Redlegs Review All-Decade Team for 2000-09.
1) Sean Casey - Played eight seasons with the Redlegs; 3-time All-Star; career .305 average is 13th-best in club history; MLB Hutch Award in 2004; team MVP in 2004; 15.4 career WAR; 256 career doubles is 11th-most in Reds history; member of Redlegs Review All-Decade Team for 2000-09.

So tell us! What does your fan ballot look like? Drop us a reply in the comment section below.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

MINOR Details from 8/27/11 and 8/28/11

Louisville Bats

On Saturday night, the Bats lost to the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 5-4. Edinson Volquez went six innings giving up just two earned runs and striking out 11 in a no-decision. Nick Christiani (2-2) got the loss allowing one earned in one inning. David Cook, Juan Francisco and Danny Dorn each had an RBI. MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco was 0-3, but did have an RBI.

Sunday, the Bats lost to the Columbus Clippers 8-5. Travis Wood (2-3) gave up six earned in just three innings for the loss. Chris Valaika and Kris Negron both hit two-run homers for the Bats. MESO-WATCHO: Mesoraco was 0-2, but once again had an RBI.

Carolina Mudcats

On Saturday night, the Mudcats lost 5-4 to the Montgomery Biscuits. Josh Ravin (0-2) took the loss pitching 5.2 innings and allowing three earned runs. Neftali Soto, Yasmani Grandal, Bill Rhinehart, and Eric Campbell all had an RBI for the Mudcats.

Sunday, the Mudcats again lost a one run game to the Biscuits, 4-3. Justin Lehr (1-2) was the losing pitcher in this one giving up four earned in five innings. Soto hit his 29th dinger of the year and had two total RBI, while Rhinehart drove in the other run.

Bakersfield Blaze

On Saturday night, the Blaze lost to the High Desert Mavericks 6-4. Mark Serrano started the game, allowing four earned in 4.1 innings. Clayton Shunick (3-3) got the loss pitching the last 3.2 innings of the game, giving up two earned. Carlos Mendez hit solo shot, and Andrew Means had two RBI.

*10pm est - Bakersfield currently leads High Desert 10-2 going into the sixth inning. We'll update this when the game goes final.

*UPDATE: The Blaze ended up winning 12-4 over High Desert late last night. J.C. Sulbaran (9-5) got the win pitching five innings, allowing just two earned while striking out eight. Chris Richburg had two homers and four total RBI. Mark Fleury did major damage in the fourth inning, hitting a grand salami.

Dayton Dragons

On Saturday night, the Dragons shutout the West Michigan Whitecaps 2-0. Daniel Corcino (11-6) was the winner throwing five shutout innings with six strikeouts. Drew Hayes (22) struck out the side in the ninth for the save. Ronald Torreyes and Tucker Barnhart contributed with an RBI each.

Sunday, the Dragons shutout the Whitecaps again 6-0. Josh Smith (13-7) got the win with six strikeouts in six innings. David Vidal hit a three run shot, while Juan Duran added a solo jack. Chris Berset and Donald Lutz had an RBI also.

Billings Mustangs

On Saturday night, the Mustangs beat the Casper Ghosts 3-1. Tony Cingrani (1-2) had 13, count em, 13 strikeouts in six shutout innings for the win, and Brooks Pinckard (8) pitched a scoreless ninth inning for the save. Juan Perez had a two run homer, while Robert Maddox knocked in one run.

Sunday, the Mustangs again beat the Ghost by a score of 9-4. Ismael Guillon (3-5) threw five innings of one run baseball to pick up the win. Jason Braun pitched two scoreless to get his first save of the season. Maddox had a two run jack, and four total RBI. Bryson Smith had two RBI, while Ryan Wright and Spencer Dickinson each had one.

AZL Reds

The AZL Reds were off on Saturday, 8/27.

*10pm est - According the to internet, the AZL Reds and AZL Brewers are in progress with the Reds leading 3-2, going into the seventh.

*UPDATE: The Reds ended up defeating the Brewers 4-3. Joel Bender threw six shutout innings and had eight strikeouts, but Alejandro Chacin (2-1) picked up the win in a scoreless inning. At the dish, Carlos Sanchez had two RBI. Gabriel Rosa and Josef Terry also had one each.

Sweep! Votto's 14-Inning Smash Squashes the Nats

Votto's walkoff homer helped push the
Reds over .500 for the first time since July 3rd.

Well, it may have took 14 innings to do so, but the Reds (67-66) completed the sweep over the Nationals (62-70) 5-4 thanks to a walkoff blast by Joey Votto. Here's the good, the bad, the notables, and the Hard Hat from Sunday's lengthy, five hour and fifteen minute affair.

The Good:
-Johnny Cueto was dealin' once again. He struckout a career-high 11 batters on Sunday while allowing just two runs over seven frames.
-Catching Cueto for the first time in 2011, Ryan Hanigan filled in nicely by reaching base five times (three times via singles) and scoring a run.
-Yonder Alonso sent the game into extras after delivering a mammoth homer off Nats' closer Drew Storen in the ninth....he is batting .467 (14-30) since being called up to the big club.
-Joey Votto smacked his 25th and 26th homers of the season--the last of which coming in the bottom of the 14th to give the Reds the victory.
-The bullpen trio of Logan Ondrusek, Jose Arredondo and Bill Bray combined to toss five scoreless innings in relief.

The Bad:
-With his 0-3 performance at the plate, Paul Janish is now hitless in his last 22 at-bats.
-Drew Stubbs went down on strikes twice more to raise his MLB-leading total to 177. He's currently pacing for 214, which would put him in second place on the all-time single-season strikeout list.
-Todd Frazier recorded baseball's version of the hat trick (3 K's).
-Nick Masset has allowed an earned run or more in four of his last five outings.
-The Reds bullpen logged seven innings in the contest, which is not good with the impending 4-game series against the Phillies coming up.

The Notables:
-Washington manager Davey Johnson, 63, was ejected in the top of the seventh after arguing a disputed call with third base umpire Joe West. Bench coach Pat Corrales was tossed in the ninth by home plate umpire Sam Holbrook for arguing balls and strikes.
-Reds skipper Dusty Baker also hit the showers early after he was ejected in the bottom of the 12th by second base umpire Chad Fairchild.
-Cincinnati has won four straight and six of their last seven.
-Washington has now lost six in a row.

The Hard Hat:
Is there any doubt who this goes to? The Hard Hat goes to Votto after the MVP went 2-5 with two homers, two walks, two RBI and two runs scored.

Updated #HatsOff Standings

Entering Sunday, it appears as though the Reds have fully overtaken the San Francisco Giants for first place in the Head & Shoulders Hats Off Movement.

Thanks to a huge weekend of tweets by Reds faithful, the Queen City now has a commanding 2,943 tweet lead over the second-place Giants (17,146-14,203).

But with that in mind, this thing isn't over yet. The contest continues to run until Wednesday, August 31st at 11:59 PM.

So keep up those #HatsOffCIN tweets Reds fans! Remember, the team who tallies the most #HatsOff tweets by the end of the month receives a donation of $50,000 to help fund inter-city youth league baseball programs.

Behind Enemy Lines: Philadelphia Phillies

The favorite to win the National League Pennant this year enters Great American Ball Park beginning Monday for a 4-game set against the Reds. Cincinnati will have the pleasure of facing the powerhouse trio of Cole Hamels (Monday), Roy Halladay (Tuesday), Cliff Lee (Wednesday), and the 9-1 Vance Worley (Thursday) throughout the week.

Here's a breakdown of those Fightin' Phils from Philadelphia:

Season record: 83-46 (1st in NL East/best in MLB)
Season record vs Reds: 3-1
Road record: 37-24 (best in NL)
Last 10 games: 5-5
Manager: Charlie Manuel (7th season, 627-474)
2011 payroll: $172.98 million (2nd in MLB)
Home park: Citizens Bank Park (2004-Present)
Established: 1883 (as the Philadelphia "Quakers")

Notable NL statistical ranks:
Runs - 6th (584)
HR - T-7th (124)
AVG - T-8th (.254)
Steals - 9th (84)
ERA - 1st (3.09)
Saves - T-6th (37)
QS - 2nd (85)
WHIP - 1st (1.17)
Errors - Fewest (57)
Roy Halladay is considered
by most to be the front runner
for the '11 Cy Young.

Team leaders:
AVG - Shane Victorino (.309)
HR - Ryan Howard (27)
RBI - Ryan Howard (99)
Wins - Roy Hallday (15)
ERA - Roy Halladay (2.56)
Saves - Ryan Madson (23)
WHIP - Cole Hamels (0.99)

Other notables:
-The Phillies have the dubious distinction of having lost the most games of any team in the history of American pro sports (10,287).
-Their overall winning percentage of .473 in 128 seasons is tied for the 4th-lowest among all active MLB teams.
-Philadelphia has won the NL East division four years running after suffering a 13-year draught before then.
-They have reached the World Series seven times in their history, but have won the series only twice (1980, 2008).
-The Phils have allowed more runs (92,598) than any other franchise in baseball history.

Lineup & Notes vs. Nats (8/28)

The Reds will look to get out their brooms on Sunday against Washington (62-69). Here is Dusty's starting lineup for the 1:10 EST affair at GABP, as well as a few notes:

Phillips 4
Lewis 7
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Frazier 5
Stubbs 8
Hanigan 2
Janish 6
Cueto 1

-With a win today Cincy would have their first series sweep at home since they swept away the defending World Champion Giants in late July. A win would also put their season record over .500 for the first time since July 3rd.
-Washington has endured a loss in five consecutive games. Another one today would tie their season-high.
-The Nats enter Sunday with the second-worst road record in the National League (25-41).
-Injured outfielder Chris Heisey (strained left oblique) is heading to AAA Louisville for a rehab assignment. He is expected to be back with the squad on September 1st.
-Johnny Cueto (9-5, 2.03 ERA) puts his league-leading ERA on the line when he faces off against the Nationals' Jordan Zimmerman (8-11, 3.10 ERA).
-Zimmerman will likely be making his last start of the season due to reaching a team-ordered limit in innings pitched.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Cincy Parades Past Nationals 6-3

Leake extended his team lead
in wins with no. 11 on Saturday.

Cincinnati (66-66) won for the third straight time Saturday en route to a 6-3 victory over the visiting Nationals (62-69) at Great American Ball Park. It is the first time the Reds record has been at an even .500 since July 6th when they were 44-44. Here's a look at the good, the bad, the notables and the Hard Hat from tonight's contest:

The Good:
-Another "W". That's now five of 'em in the last six tries for Cincinnati.
-Drew Stubbs smacked three singles, drove in a run, and stole a base. He also broke a streak of 11 consecutive games with at least one strikeout.
-Mike Leake pitched well to earn his 11th win of the year. He held the Nats to just two runs on six hits over six innings of work.
-Dusty Baker's bunch did well in getting 'em on, getting 'em over, and getting 'em in as they stranded just four runners in the entire game.
-Francisco Cordero continued his dominance at home. He is now 12-for-12 in save chances with an ERA under 1.00 at GABP in 2011.
-Brandon Phillips had a pair of hits, an RBI and two runs scored.
-The Reds pitching staff surrendered just one walk on the evening.

The Bad:
-The reigning league MVP Joey Votto had a rare off night at the plate going 0-4 with a K.
-Jay Bruce had his second straight 0-for-3 night on Saturday including a pair of strikeouts.
-Phillips' throwing error was his second miscue in two nights.
-Cincinnati pitchers allowed three homers, although all three were of the solo variety.

The Notables:
-Phillips is currently riding a 10-game hitting streak since being inserted into the lead-off spot and is hitting .442 (19-43) over that span.
-Washington has now lost five straight.

The Hard Hat:
The Redlegs Review Hard Hat for this victory goes to Leake. His quality start played a big role in the outcome tonight.

Lineup & Notes vs. Nats (8/27)

Mike Leake (10-8) gets the ball tonight as the Redlegs go for their third win in a row. Here's the starting lineup and some notes on the 7:10 EST affair against Washington (62-68):

Phillips 4
Sappelt 7
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Cairo 5
Stubbs 8
Renteria 6
Hanigan 2
Leake 1

-Washington SP Ross Detwiler is 0-8 with a 4.94 ERA in his career on the road.
-The Nationals are currently riding a 4-game losing skid.
-Leake allowed six runs during his last outing vs. the Nats in a 6-4 defeat on August 16th.
-The two teams have split the four games between them so far in 2011.
-Joey Votto is hitting .472 (17-36) in his last 12 games.
-A win on Saturday would lift the Reds' record to an even .500 for the first time since July 6th when they stood at 44-44.

Reds Notes: Heisey, Hernandez & More

Happy Saturday everyone! Here's a few notes for you on this glorious weekend day...
  • Logan Ondrusek (strained right forearm) was activated from the 15-day DL before the game on Friday. Travis Wood was demoted to Triple-A Louisville to make room for Ondrusek on the 25-man roster.
  • Chris Heisey (strained left oblique) could begin a Minor League rehab assignment as soon as Saturday according to the team's official website. Dusty Baker added that the team hopes to have him back around September 1st. Heisey has been sidelined since August 7th with the injury.
  • In case you've missed it, Ramon Hernandez will finish out the year as a Red after Cincy pulled the 35-year old off waivers Friday afternoon. Under league rules, Hernandez can no longer be placed on the waiver list now that he's been removed once. For more on the situation follow this link here
  • With a Brewers win and a victory of their own, Cincinnati remained a distant 13 GB of the division lead. They also remain 13 GB of Atlanta in the NL Wild Card.
  • The Redlegs look to make it three in a row and five out of six with a win over the Nationals on Saturday. Right-hander Mike Leake (10-8, 4.09 ERA) will counter Washington's Ross Detwiler (2-3, 2.61 ERA) with first pitch slated for 7:10 EST.
  • And lastly I leave you with this little piece of hilarity. When asked by blogger Gary Schatz if he noticed any differences in Cincinnati since he left in 1995 as manager, current Nationals skipper Davey Johnson had this to say, "Yeah there's grass and no dog poop." At the time the Reds we're still playing on the AstroTurf in Riverfront Stadium and former owner Marge Schott routinely let her St. Bernard dog do their business on the field. After her dog left a surprise at shortstop one day, MVP-to-be and shortstop Barry Larkin said, "I'll tell you one thing, I'm not diving for any balls tonight!"

MINOR Details from 8/26/11

Louisville 7 Lehigh Valley 4
Chad Reineke (8-6) threw 6.1 innings of two run baseball and struck out four to get the win. Juan Francisco hit his 15th home run of the year, a solo shot in the first. Denis Phipps and Jeremy Hermida both had two RBI while Danny Dorn and James Skelton drove in one run a piece.

MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco had the day off. *Ramon Hernandez was claimed by an unknown team and subsequently pulled back from waivers by the Reds. This throws a tiny wrench into Mesoraco coming up because they will have to make room for him on the 40 man roster, which means some currently on it will have to be removed. It will be interesting, but I do still fully expect him to be added and promoted on September 1st.

James Avery (6-12) gave up nine, seven earned, Biscuit (yes they're the Montgomery Biscuits) runs in just 2.2 innings to take the loss. Henry Rodruigez had a huge night in the loss going 2-4 with two homers and six ribeyes. Cody Puckett had a home run and two RBI, and Neftali Soto added a solo shot, his 28th of the year.

Matt Fairel (0-4) went 4.2 innings allowing five earned runs to the Mavericks and was the losing pitcher. Jorge Jiminez had three RBI, while Mark Fleury and Alex Buchholz added one each.

Tanner Robles (6-9) got the win pitching five innings, with three earned runs and five strikeouts. David Vidal and Tucker Barnhart each had a home run and two RBI. Theo Bowe, Chris Berset, and Ronald Torreyes chipped in two RBI a piece. Juan Duran and Billy Hamilton each had an RBI and Hamilton did not steal a base.

Cole Green (2-1) struck out five in five innings of one run baseball for the win. Danny Vicioso and Junior Arias both had three RBI for the Mustangs. Ryan Wright drove in two, while Kyle Waldrop and Bryson Smith each pushed a run across too.

Carlos Gonzalez (2-3) took the loss allowing five earned runs in four innings pitched. Gabriel Rosa had two RBI and Yimmy Lopez knocked in one of his own for the Reds.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Reds Topple Nationals on Cairo's Walkoff

Cairo is mobbed by teammates after
his clutch single with one out in the 9th.

Miguel Cairo's walkoff single in the bottom of the ninth sent the host Reds (65-66) to a 4-3 victory over Washington (62-68) Friday night. The win marked the third in the past four games for Dusty Baker's team. Here's a look at the good, the bad, the notables and the Hard Hat for this Reds victory:

The Good:
-Although Dontrelle Willis remained winless, the southpaw did record a quality start. The D-Train tossed seven innings of 3-run, 7-hit ball while also matching his career-high with three hits at the plate.
-Brandon Phillips picked up two hits and two more RBI to raise his season total to 72.
-Todd Frazier came through with two hits of his own while adding a RBI and a run scored.
-The duo of Aroldis Chapman and Francisco Cordero combined to pitch two scoreless innings.
-The Redlegs pounded out 12 hits.
-Cordero improved to 5-0 at home this season.
-Cincy has now won the first game of a weekend series in four of their last five occasions.

The Bad:
-The Redlegs left a whopping 15 men on base in the affair. That's not good no matter how you stack it up.
-Drew Stubbs went down on strikes three more times to raise his MLB-leading total to 176 for the year. However, he did come around to score the game-winning run on Cairo's single, so we won't pester him too bad tonight.
-Willis handed out a season-high five base-on-balls.

The Notable:
-The game was delayed for 17 minutes in the seventh inning afte two banks of lights behind first base went out.
-The Reds activated Logan Ondrusek from the 15-day DL and optioned Travis Wood to Triple-A Louisville before the game.

The Hard Hat:
The recipient of the Redlegs Review Hard Hat for this Reds victory goes to Willis. Although he didn't pick up that elusive first win of the season, he played a huge role both on the mound and at the dish.

Lineup & Notes vs. Nats (8/26)

Here's the starting lineup and some notables for Friday's 7:10 PM affair against the Nationals:

Phillips 4
Lewis 7
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Hernandez 2
Stubbs 8
Frazier 5
Janish 6
Willis 1

-Washington leads the season series 2-1 after taking two of three from the Reds a week ago in D.C.
-The Nationals enter Friday as having the second-worst road record in the league at 25-39.
-The Reds are the only team in MLB to have a losing record despite owning a positive run differential on the season (+44).
-Former Red Jonny Gomes is batting seventh and playing left field for Washington tonight.
-Willis is vying for his first big league win since June 5, 2010 while a member of Arizona.
-Tonight will mark the second-to-last Friday night home game of the year.

Update on #HatsOff Standings

Thanks to all you #Reds tweeters out there, Cincinnati has now pulled within 629 from the overall lead. Entering Friday, the San Francisco Giants led all MLB teams with 8,778 #hatsoff tweets, with the Redlegs close behind in second with 8149.

And it would seem as though it's a two-horse race to the finish. The next closest competitor after Cincy is the Detroit Tigers with a modest 195 tweets.

Remember, you have until August 31st before the contest ends. Head & Shoulders - the contest sponsor - will make a donation of $50k to the team who scores the most tweets. That money will then go to the MLB RBI Program to help fund youth league baseball in the area.

So get out your smartphone, laptop or desktop and start including the hashtag "#HatsOffCIN" to the end (or front) of all your baseball/non-baseball related tweets alike.

News & Notes: Hernandez, Votto & More

It appears Ramon Hernandez will finish
out the year as a Red after all.
  • Veteran catcher Ramon Hernandez was claimed off waivers by an unspecified team on Friday, but it appears as though the 35-year old will be staying put in Cincy. The Reds quickly pulled him back and at this point, cannot be claimed by another team. All of this courtesy of Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman.
  • The move to keep Hernandez in a Reds uniform may pay huge dividends down the road. The 13-year veteran is projected to be a Type A free agent (ranks in the top 20% of players at his position) by the Elias Sports Bureau at season's end. So what does this mean for the Redlegs? If Hernandez decides to sign with another team in the offseason after being offered arbitration by the Reds, Cincinnati could potentially receive the top draft pick from the team who signs him, as well as a supplemental selection in the upcoming MLB Draft as compensation.
  • The Reds open up a 7-game homestand by hosting the Washington Nationals (62-67) to a game scheduled for 7:10 PM tonight. It will be the still winless Dontrelle Willis (0-3, 4.14 ERA) facing off against the Nats' Chien-Ming Wang (2-2, 4.33 ERA).
  • On Joey Votto's recent road trip where he went .481 (13-27) with 5 homers and 12 RBI, "Nobody gets locked in like Joey Votto," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "...He can hit you any part of the ballpark and he's climbing up the batting race. It's nice to see Joey get hot."
  • And although very much out of the playoff race, the Reds still aim to finish the 2011 campaign strong, writes Mark Sheldon of

MINOR Details from 8/25/11

Louisville 6 Lehigh Valley 5
Matt Maloney (6-1) got the win giving up three earned in six innings with four strikeouts. Brad Boxberger (4) picked up the save in a scoreless inning. Kris Negron had a home run and three RBI, while Jeremy Hermida also had a dinger with two RBI. Juan Francisco contributed with an RBI also.

MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco simply went 1-4. He did have an error though.

Jacksonville 5 Carolina 3
Curtis Partch (2-1) gave up four earned in 5.1 innings taking the loss. Yasmani Grandal in a pinch hitting role was 1-1 with two RBI. Miguel Rojas had the other RBI.

Rancho Cucamonga 2 Bakersfield 0
Tim Crabbe (2-1) got the loss despite pitching seven innings of two run baseball. As for the rest of the Blaze, there wasn't much doing. Brodie Greene, Chris Richburg, Carlos Mendez (a 2B!), and Jordan Wideman all had a hit, so there's that.

Dayton 9 Great Lakes 0
Kyle Lotzkar (3-1) pitched six shutout innings with four K for the win. Blaine Howell, Pat Doyle, and Chad Rogers preserved the shutout each with an inning of work. Ronald Torreyes had two triples and three RBI. Tucker Barnhart drove in two runs and Billy Hamilton, David Vidal, and Theo Bowe had an RBI each. Hamilton did not steal any bases.

Billings 7 Casper 6
Wes Mugarian started the game and gave up five runs in five innings. Erik Miller (3-0) got the win in relief pitching a hitless inning with two strikeouts against the Ghosts. Juan Perez, Bryson Smith, Robert Maddox, Kyle Waldrop, Junior Arias, Yovan Gonzales, and Spencer Dickinson all contributed an RBI. Dickinson was a home run short of the cycle, going 3-4 with a 1B, 2B, and 3B.

AZL Indians 9 AZL Reds 0
Lucas O'Rear (0-4) managed only two innings where he walked five and allowed six earned runs to take the loss. Wagner Gomez and Brandon Dailey had the only hits of the night for the Reds.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

On This Day in Baseball and #Reds History


"1939 — The first Major League Baseball game was televised as WXBS brought their cameras to Brooklyn's Ebbets Field for a doubleheader between the Cincinnati Reds and the Dodgers."

Some fans must have heard the that games are on TV now because they sure didn't show up to watch in person yesterday.

Anyways, baseball has come a long way since 1939, with nearly every game being televised in some way (and in color, HD, and some even 3D nonetheless), whether it be Fox Sports Ohio, ESPN, or the MLB Network. Plus there are a number of shows dedicated to analyzing baseball and just showing highlights (web gem anyone?). One of these days we'll be able to reach through the TV and snag a fly ball.

Of course, the Reds are off today, due to the game being moved to yesterday in anticipation of the impending hurricane, but they will resume play tomorrow at Great American Ball Park against Jonny Gomes and the Nationals.

MINOR Details from 8/24/11

Lehigh Valley 6 Louisville 5
Daryl Thompson (3-2) took the loss to the Iron Pigs giving up three earned and eight hits in 5.1 innnings, while striking out four. Jeremy Hermida was 3-5 with a home run and two RBI and Kris Negron also pitched in with two RBI of his own for the Bats.

MESO-WATCHO: Devin Mesoraco went 1-3, with an RBI and a walk. *Also, Ramon Hernandez was placed on waivers yesterday, so the MesoWatcho may be over sooner than we think if either a team places a claim on him and works out a trade with the Reds, or he clears waivers, in which case, Hernandez can be traded to any team.

Carolina 2 Jacksonville 1
Pedro Villarreal pitched seven innings of five hit, one run baseball and struck out four in a no-decision. Kyle McCulloch (6-6) threw two hitless innings to finish the game and get the win against the Suns. Cody Puckett and Josh Fellhauer picked up an RBI each for the Mudcats.

Rancho Cucamonga 12 Bakersfield 10
Derrik Lutz (1-2) was saddled with the loss giving up four Quakes runs in just a 1/3 of an inning. Alex Buchholz had a homer and two RBI, while Chris Richburg and Ryan LaMarre each knocked in two RBI as well for the Blaze.

Great Lakes 9 Dayton 3
Mitch Clarke (3-2) gave up five earned runs in 4.1 innings against the Loons to take the loss. Kurtis Muller, Donald Lutz, and Juan Duran accounted for the Dragons' three RBI.

Billings 13 Idaho Falls 9
Jason Braun (1-0) got the win against the Chukars in relief, pitching 3.1 innings of one run baseball. Mustangs' catcher Yovan Gonzales had a huge night going 3-5 with a homer and five RBI. Ryan Wright had a jackson and three RBI, and Junior Arias also had a homer and two RBI.

AZL Reds 7 AZL Dodgers 6
Justice French got a no-decision after striking out five in five innings and giving up three earned. Jim Moran (1-1) got the win in 1.1 scoreless innings of relief. Alejandro Chacin (11) pitched 1.2 innings for the save. Brennan May had a two run blast, while Brandon Dailey, Humberto Valor, and Matt Lentz each picked up an RBI.

Behind Enemy Lines: Washington Nationals

After concluding a 9-game, 3-city road swing on Wednesday, the Redlegs (64-66) return home to the banks of the Ohio on Friday to welcome the Washington Nationals to town.

Here's the lowdown on the Nats:

Season record: 62-65 (3rd in NL East/20.5 GB)
Season record vs Reds: 2-1
Home record: 25-39 (3rd worst in NL)
Last 10 games: 6-4
Manager: Davey Johnson (1st season, 22-27)
2011 payroll: $57.89 million (23rd in MLB)
Home park: Nationals Park (2008-Present)
Established: 1969 (formerly known as "Montreal Expos")

Notable NL statistical ranks:
Runs - 14th (491)
HR - 9th (117)
AVG - 12th (.245)
OBP - T-14th (.309)
Steals - T-7th (88)
ERA - 6th (3.66)
Saves - T-4th (38)
Errors - 9th (82)
QS - T-11th (65)
WHIP - 9th (1.32)

Team leaders:
AVG - Michael Morse (.317)
HR - Michael Morse (21)
RBI - Michael Morse (71)
Wins - Jordan Zimmerman (8)
ERA - Jordan Zimmerman (3.10)
Saves - Drew Storen (34)

Other notables:
- The franchise is the only National League team to have never played in a World Series.
- The organization was the first major league team in Canada.
- They were relocated from Montreal to Washington D.C. before the 2005 season.
- Throughout their 42-year history, the club has made the postseason just once (1981).
- The team's original name, the "Expos", was derived from the 1967 International and Universal Exposition (Expo 67) which was held in Montreal.
- 3224-3564 overall franchise record.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sun (No) Life Stadium

Seats upon empty seats sat gleaming in the Miami sun on Wednesday, most of which weren't occupied by fans. So it begs the question, just how many people were really in attendance to watch the first game of the Reds/Marlins doubleheader on Wednesday? As the famous Tootsie Roll Pop commercial goes, "the world may never know".
Not even the wise Mr. Owl knows

The Marlins didn't even have the decency (or bravery) to reveal the exact number in the game's box score--an omission that up until tonight, I didn't even know was possible. But yet, thanks to the members of the media covering the game, along with the few fans that were actually there, we have visual evidence that such a low turnout did indeed occur.

To help aide us in our quest to determine the exact attendance count from the game, I present to you these two photos below. Remember, if you need more than ten fingers to count, use your toes.

Rojo Mojo! Arroyo & Reds Hold on to Take Series

Bronson Arroyo won for the first time
since June 25th on Wednesday.

Backed by a masterful pitching performance by the long-haired Bronson Arroyo, the Reds (64-66) managed to take game two of Wednesday's doubleheader, and thus, the series from Florida (58-72) by a final tally of 3-2. Here's the good, the bad, the notables and the Hard Hat from the contest:

The Good:
-Joey Votto picked up three more hits in the night cap, including his 24th homer of the season with a solo shot in the third. Overall, he went 5-for-7 with two homers, 4 RBI and two runs scored on the day.
-Bronson Arroyo has now strung three, consecutive quality starts together after the right-hander tossed eight innings of six-hit, no run baseball in the affair. He also laid down a sacrifice bunt to help himself improve to 8-10 on the year.
-The Reds jumped out to an early 2-0 lead before the Marlins could even take a turn at-bat.
-Miguel Cairo was credited with a stolen base tonight, his first of the season. He had been thrown out in all three of his prior attempts.
-Cincy wins a series on the road. In fact, that now makes two in a row when you include the prior series in Pittsburgh.

The Bad:
-The bottom half of the order failed to record a single hit. Altogether the 5-9 hitters went 0-for-16.
-Cincinnati hitters struckout eight times. On the contrary, Florida went down on strikes only once.
-You know that earthquake the East Coast supposedly felt on Tuesday? Well, it turns out it's just the Reds bullpen. Francisco Cordero did manage to close out the game for his 28th save, but he used every bit of the lead and all of the Reds patience in doing so.
-The team was oh so close to winning the first game earlier, which would've gave them the rare doubleheader sweep had they pulled it out.

The Notable:
-Drew Stubbs K'd two more times on Wednesday night, raising his MLB-leading total to 172 for 2011.
-For Arroyo, it was his first career victory over the Marlins. He had previously been 0-3 in seven lifetime starts against them.
-It was also Arroyo's first victory since a 10-5 win over Baltimore on June 25th.

The Hard Hat:
-Although Votto did have half of the team's hits, the Redlegs Review Hard Hat for this Reds win goes to Arroyo. His outing today was just what the doctor ordered.