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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.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Seattle Mariners Sail Over Cincinnati's Bullpen

The soggy Cincinnati weather made the Seattle Mariners, who hail from the rain belt,but Dan Straily was a bit inhospitable. The Reds' bullpen became the Welcome Wagon gift wrapping a 8-3 game for the visitors..

Straily scattered three hits over the first five innings as his teammates built a 3-0 lead.

Joey Votto walked with two out in the first inning against Mariner starter Hisashi Iwakuma.  Brandon Phillips snapped an 0-for-11 streak with a double off the wall in centerfield.  Votto scored standing up as catcher Chris Iannetta was drawn up the firstbase line and couldn't come up with the baseball.

Zack Cozart hit his fifth home run of the season, leading off the fifth and the Reds scored their third run when Eugenio Suarez, who walked scored on Tucker Barnhart's single.

Straily pitched out of a first and third, not out jam in the second inning. Singles by Adam Lind, Kyle Seager and Seth Smith and three walks were all the visitors could muster in five innings.

"I didn't have my best stuff. I battled to get my pitch count down. I six (innings) is o.k. but it's not seven," Straily said. "Every single guy in this clubhouse feels it. We have guys in here early trying to get better. It is no fun to lose. It's been poor execution or bad luck or a combination of both."

The Mariners closed the gap in the sixth.  Straily hit Robinson Cano with a pitch to start the inning. Seager hit a drive to right that hooked foul.  The Reds shifted on him with a 3-1 count, sending thirdbaseman Suarez between Votto and Phillips.  Seager hit a smash right down the line past Votto and sending Cano to the plate with the Mariner's first run.  Billy Hamilton made a diving catch after running down Lind's bid for a double.  Straily finished the inning with no more damage.  He pitched six innings, allowing a run on four hits.

"Straily was wonderful," Bryan Price said. "He battled through the sixth. I thought he had had enough. With 107 pitches, there was no way I was going to send him back out there.  He had to get Iannetta out and he made a good pitch to do it."

Blake Wood relieved Straily.

Leonys Martin greeted Wood with a single and pinch hitter Nori Aoki executed a hit-and-run single through the shortstop hole. Wood walked Ketel Marte and Smith to make it a 3-2 game. Manager Bryan Price brought in Tony Cingrani.  Cingrani hit Cano with his first pitch to tie the game.  Cingrani rallied and struck Cruz out swinging and Seagar looking.  Pinch hitter Dae-Ho Lee singled to right to put the Mariners up 5-3. Cingrani threw to first and had Lee picked off and in a rundown.  Cozart threw home and caught Cano who was charged with a caught stealing.

"It's been bad," Price said. "It is nothing personal but it has not been a well pitched season. Everybody's working but nobody wants to hear it. I don't want to hear how hard people are working. I want to see some results or I want to see some change.We have to pitch better or we have to find better."

The Mariners added a run against J.C. Ramirez in the eighth. Nelson Cruz hit his ninth home run of the season off Jumbo Cruz into the upper deck in the ninth. It was the 250th of his career... Lee hit his sixth in the ninth.

Tucker Barnhart had three hits for the Reds.

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