The Reds' offense wasted Homer Bailey's quality start.
Carlos Martinez allowed two hits, four walks and hit a batter in seven scoreless innings as the St. Louis Cardinals got just enough offense to send the Reds' to their 13th loss in 15 games, 3-2.
The sweep of the four-game series was the first since the Cardinals took all four August 13-16 in 2001 in St. Louis. The last time the Cardinals authored a four-game sweep in Cincinnati was July 8-10 in 1949, that included a double header.
St. Louis scored off Bailey in the second.
Yadier Molina singled with one out. After Molina was forced at second by yesterday's hero Greg Garcia. Harrison Bader, who was giving Marcel Ozuna his first day off of the season hit his first home run of the season into the rightfield stands.
"It is part of the job as a starter.\," Bailey said. "You're going to win or lose a lot of games on one or two pitches. I feel like the two-run home run the ball came a little bit middle. I didn't make a whole lot of mistakes today. They put together some pretty good at bats at the end."
Cardinals starter, Carlos Martinez, allowed base runners in the first three innings but only Jose Peraza posed a threat to score. Peraza doubled one out into the first and reached third before Adam Duvall hit into a force play to end the inning. He reached third on a walk, a error by Martinez on a pick off attempt and a wild pitch. Scooter Gennett struck out to end the third.
The Reds started the fourth inning with promise. Duvall opened the inning with a double over Bader's head in left. Tucker Barnhart drew Martinez' fourth walk but Alex Blandino hit into a 6-4-3 double play and Phillip Ervin struck out.
Bailey retired eight straight after Bader's home run until he walked Bader in his next at bat. Barnhart threw him out stealing.
The Cardinals added a run in the seventh. Jose Martinez doubled with one out as Billy Hamilton couldn't make a diving catch. Molina hit a drive over Hamilton's head. Martinez scored but Hamilton's quick retrieval and quick and accurate throw easily beat Molina to second base.
Bailey finished with seven innings, allowing three runs on four hits and two walks. He struck out four.
"Homer was very, very good," Price said. "He was really acute with his location. He didn't give them much but they did get the hit, they were able to handle and score a few runs, enough to win."
Amir Garrett remains unscored upon with a 2/3 innings. Jared Hughes got the last out in the top of the ninth.
Duvall's third home run of the season off Bud Norris made it a one-run game when he led off the ninth. Barnhart bunted for a hit to third baseman, Garcia. The throw got away from Martinez at first. The Reds challenged that the throw went out of play and Barnhart was awarded second on the throwing error. Jesse Winker was used as a pinch runner. Blandino struck out swinging. Ervin struck out looking. Devin Mesoraco batted for Hughes. Mesoraco was hit by a 2-1 pitch. The Reds needed a hit from Hamilton to tie the game. Hamilton lined out to left to end the game.
"It was a game we could have won. Billy smoked that ball to the leftfielder," Price said. "We needed to put the ball in play and get a bunt down. We weren't able to do that. However, there was some good fight at the end. We're integrating a lot of young players into the group. With Schebler, out, Winker out and Suarez out we're asking them to pick up a good bit of playing time. They have to learn."
The Reds came up short but showed promise that better days are close.
"I think what we take away from this game is how resilient we were in almost coming back," Bailey said. "The bullpen was locked down in the eighth and the ninth. We kept battling back. It was good to see man especially after this kind of start. We have to have a little bit of fire and try to win some games. We were really close right there. We played really good defense today. That was good to see."
"It is one of those games we didn't win but we saw the change. Everybody in the dugout was happy and having fun, enjoying the game," Hamilton said. "From here on up, I feel like we can only get better."
It was Bailey's team leading third quality start, yet his record is 0-3 with a good 3.42 ERA,
"We're fucking 2-12 that's not very good at all, regardless of my numbers. My numbers alone don't count. It's what we're doing as a team, man."