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I am a freelance writer. I've covered the Cincinnati Reds, Bengals and others since 1992. I have a background in sales as well. I've sold consumer electronics, advertising and consumer package goods for companies ranging from the now defunct Circuit City to Procter&Gamble. I have worked as a stats operator for Xavier University, the University of Cincinnati, the College of Mount St. Joe and Colerain High School.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Eugenio Suarez and Brandon Phillips Key a 10-Run Inning To Avoid 10th Straight Loss

Eugenio Suarez and Brandon Phillips grabbed a Tiger by the tail with two hits in a 10-run sixth inning.

Suarez homered and doubled. Phillips homered and tripled to snap the Reds' nine-game losing streak in a 12-5 win

“We just play the game as best we can and try to stay humble,” Phillips said. “Even when you lose you want to have fun but I tell the young guys to never get used to losing.”

When this game was originally scheduled on June 18, the pitching matchup was supposed to be Justin Verlander against Mike Leake.  Leake of course left for San Francisco.  It was not Verlander's turn.

Two rookies, Buck Farmer for Detroit and Kyvius Sampson for Cincinnati, neither of whom were in the big leagues on that date, squared off instead.

Sampson got the first out of the game but the roof fell in after that.

Ian Kinsler singled hard to left. Miguel Cabrera, who returned from a 36-game calf injury on August 14, singled off the rightfield fence to extend his hitting streak to nine games. J.D. Martinez followed with his 33rd home run of the season. Nick Castellanos belted his 14th home run. Sampson threw 45 pitches in the inning.

Farmer was much better. A walk to Joey Votto, his 101st, and a walk to Skip Schumaker were the only blemishes on Farmer's line in the first four innings.  Jason Bourgeios singled to break the no-hitter in the fifth.

Before Sampson left after four innings, the Tigers added a marker.  Kinsler singled and Cabrera doubled him home.

Sampson allowed nine hits and two walks in his four innings with five earned runs charged to him.
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Newcomer Collin Balester replaced Sampson and was around when the Reds exploded to earn the win.

"It always gives you an edge to get a win against your former team," said Balester, whose last win came as a Tiger in 2012. "I'm trying to do everything I can to help my team win."

Eugenio Suarez made his former teammates miss him by launching his ninth home run to snap a string of 16 scoreless innings by the Reds.  Farmer lost control after Suarez broke the spell. Votto walked. Brandon Phillips hit his 10th home run to bring the Reds within two runs and chase Farmer.  Al Alburquerque replaced him.

“Suarez sparked us,” Reds’ manager Bryan Price said of the shortstop who got a chance at the big leagues due to an injury to Zach Cozart. “He’s had a lot of run production in 200 at bats. I didn’t anticipate that. With two strikes he gives a quality at bat.”

Todd Frazier bunted off Alburquerque for a base hit, the second time he's done that in as many days. Jay Bruce belted a long double to leftcenter to score Frazier from firstbase. Bourgeois walked and Detroit brought on its third hurler of the inning, Tom Gorzelanny.  Bruce and Bourgeois pulled a double steal with Tucker Barnhart at the plate. Barnhart walked to load the bases and Gorzellany was replaced by Neftali Feliz. Ivan De Jesus Jr. struck out as a pinch hitter. Schumaker singled to put the Reds on top. Suarez followed with a bloop double to drive in two more runs, producing the Reds' biggest inning of the year. But the Reds weren't finished, oh not they weren't, Phillips tripled to plate two more runs. Frazier was ahead in the count 3-0 before he popped out to end the 10-run inning, the biggest innings since they scored 10 against Arizona on August 19, 2005 in the fourth inning.

“It was an important hit for our team. We needed some smiles around here,” Schumaker said. “It was big for me. I didn’t want to make two outs in the inning.”

Joey Votto added his 24th home run with Suarez on base with his third hit off Guido Knudson.

Aroldis Chapman made his first appearance since he suffered the blown save against Kansas City a week ago. He had been resting a tired shoulder.

Professionally edited by ML Schirmer
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