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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 22, 2016

Dodgers Hit Seven Home Runs, Collect 21 Hits Even Series

Before the game Reds' manager Bryan Price warned the press about talking exit velocity, the speed in which the ball leaves the park after a batter hits it.

That left the press nothing to talk about when the Dodgers launched seven home runs, four in a six-run fifth inning on the way to a 18-9 win over the Reds to even the four-game series at two wins each.

"It's a loss. It's uglier and takes longer than when you lose 1-0," Bryan Price said. "We'll start fresh tomorrow."

The only exit faster than the balls struck by the Dodger hitters was the exit of Homer Bailey, who lasted 2 1/3 ineffective innings as the Reds' starting pitcher.

"It comes down to what do I have that day and is it detrimental to my team winning a game. There are days when you're achy or fatigued. That's part of it," Bailey said. "It happens when you're not coming off of surgery too, just the valleys aren't as low."

"We know there will be games like this coming off surgery," Price said.

Adrian Gonzalez followed singles by Chase Utley and Corey Seager to open the game with his 13th home run.  The Dodgers added a fourth first-inning run on a sacrifice fly by Andrew Toles that scored Joc Pederson.

The Reds fought back.  Billy Hamilton wangled a walk from Dodgers' starter Scott Kazmir.  Hamilton toured the bases, second on a fly to center, third on a ground ball to secondbase and a triple by Adam Duvall on a fly to shallow right that Toles couldn't locate.

Scoring continued in the third

Three straight singles by Pederson, Howie Kendrick and Toles produced a run.  Rob Segedin's sacrifice fly scored Kendrick.

The Reds countered off Kazmir.

Jose Peraza doubled. Joey Votto singled to score Peraza. Adam Duvall walked.  Scott Schebler and Tucker Barnhart singled to bring the score to 6-4.

Peraza singled and scored on Votto's double in the fourth made it a one-run game.

"We had a really nice offensive day," Price said. "To see it in a game like that when it is slipping away shows some effort," Price said.

Josh Smith picked up the Reds when Bailey left getting the last two outs in the third and throwing a scoreless fourth inning but the fifth was another story.

Smith walked Kendrick.  Toles hit his first career home run.  Segedin followed with his first career home run. Utley singled and Corey Seager hit his 22nd of the season to set a new record for Dodgers' shortstops.  Jumbo Diaz replaced Smith and served up the second home run of the game to Gonzalez. It was the 21st time he had more than one home run in a game.

The Reds started another comeback in the sixth against Pedro Baez.

Peraza singled again, his third hit.  Votto hit as sinking line drive that bounced past Toles for a triple.  Duvall drove Votto in with a sacrifice fly.

Peraza had four hits and pushed his batting average over the .300 mark.

"I'm trying to keep working on the details and put the ball in play," Peraza said.  

The Dodgers weren't finished.

Jumbo Diaz walked Utley and Seager forcing Bryan Price to bring Blake Wood into the game. Wood became the third Reds' pitcher to give up a home run to the first batter he faced as Gonzalez set a career high with his third home run of the game. His seven RBI was also a career high.  Yasmani Grandal gave the Dodgers their third set of back-to-back home runs.  Grandal, the Reds' first draft pick in 2010, it was his 22nd home run of the year, extending his career high.

The Dodgers scored two runs off Michael Lorenzen without the aid of a home run.  Seager set a career high with four hits in the game.

Bud Norris, who started the first game of the series on Friday, entered in the eighth for the Dodgers.  Schebler's third hit drove in Duvall with the Reds' eighth run.

The Reds resorted to using outfielder Tyler Holt to pitch the ninth.  Holt retired the side in order on five pitches using a knuckleball that he learned playing catch with his dad as an eight-year old.

"I couldn't take my at bat seriously," said Holt of his fly out to rightfield in the eighth inning. "I was trying to have a good time with it and take it seriously.  I threw two knuckleballs and three bp (batting practice) fastballs.  I didn't want to hit anybody.  Hitters aren't used to hitting a ball at that speed."

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