Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dominant Pitching Leads Reds to a 2-1 Victory and Sweep over Brewers

Cueto boosts his record to 12-5
In my opinion, today is the biggest day Reds fans have had since September 28th, 2010. The day Jay Bruce hit a walk off solo homer run to clinch the National League Central and ending a 15 year long Redlegs postseason drought.

Not only did today see Cincinnati native and true Redleg Barry Larkin inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame, but also a Reds 2-1 win over the Brewers, sweeping the series. 
As usual, pitching played a dominant role in today's win. Johnny Cueto was his usual self after coming off an extended rest due to a blister with a 7 inning, 8 hit 1 Run effort where he walked only 1 batter and struck out 9. Logan Ondrusek came in to pitch a 2 hit, no run 8th and Reds closer Aroldis Chapman recorded two strikeouts and a walk in the 9th to cap the win for the Reds. Chapman last pitch struck out Ryan Braun, swinging to win to clinch the win.  Chapman has faced Braun twice this series, striking him out both times.

The Good
- After being skipped in the rotation due to a blister, Johnny Cueto was back to his usual form with a dominant win. His ERA is now 2.23. 
- The Reds staff as a whole has a 3.34 ERA, good enough for third in all of baseball.
- The Bullpen remains one of the best in baseball. Giving up no runs despite 3 hits.
- Chris Heisey and Wilson Valdez went 3 for 8 today, each recording a run, the only two of the game.
- Brandon Phillips went 2 for 3 today with a double and an RBI.

The Bad
- Jay Bruce continues to struggle. he went 0 for 4 at the plate today,  Striking out once and leaving two on base.
- Ryan Hanigan also seems to be cooling off. He went 0-2 today leaving 2 men on.

The Notables
- 32,844 showed up to Great American to see the Reds in action.
- Today was a hot and humid 86 degree day with no wind. A perfect recipe for dominant pitching.
- With this win, the Reds are now 15 games over .500, half a game over the Pirates and 5.5 games over the St. Louis Cardinals. They are also now 5-2 without Joey Votto.
- This is the third sweep the Reds have had in june. They swept the San Diego Padres at the beginning of the month and capped off a return from the All-Star Break with a sweep over rival St. Louis Cardinals last weekend.
- Today ends the home run streak at Great American Ballpark. Prior to this game there had been at least one home run in the last 74 games played at the Ballpark, 6 homers short of the Major League record.
- The Reds went 8-2 on their first homestand of the second half of the season.
- The Reds now head on a six game road trip to Houston and Colorado before returning home on 30th to face the Padres and then the NL Central contenders Pittsburgh Pirates.
- Your Redlegs now head to Houston for a three game series against the struggling Astros. Mat Latos (7-3 4.33 ERA 106 SO) will face Wandy Rodriguez (7-8 3.75 ERA 83 SO)
Barry Larkin became the 12th player to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of fame as a Red. He joins Sparky AndersonJohnny BenchErnie LombardiBill McKechnieBid McPhee, Joe MorganTony Perez, Eppa RixeyEdd RoushGeorge Wright and Harry Wright in Cooperstown. I think it's a safe bet that number 11 will be retired by the organization in the coming years. 

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