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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.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Reds' Fast Start Slow Finish

The Reds got off to a fast start against St. Louis Cardinal ace Adam Wainwright but the Cardinals had the last laugh in a 13-4 debacle at Great American Ball Park..

After Homer Bailey quickly disposed of the Cardinals in the first by picking off Tommy Pham, who walked, the Reds’ first three batters scored off Wainwright.

Billy Hamilton singled.  Zack Cozart, fresh off the DL followed with a hit.  Joey Votto hit a full count pitch into the seats in rightfield for his 29 home run of the season and 250th of his career. Votto joins Jay Bruce at the top of the list with 135 home runs at Great American Ball Park.

The Reds weren’t done.  Adam Duvall walked. Scooter Gennett dumped a single into right and Eugenio Suarez walked.  Wainwright recorded his first out on his 39th pitch of the inning.  A one-hop ground ball to Matt Carpenter at firstbase.  Carpenter stepped on the bag and threw Duvall out at home.  The Cardinals passed Tucker Barnhart to reload the bases.  Wainwright had a prolonged seven pitch battle with Bailey before the Reds’ starter struck out.  Wainwright threw 45 pitches in the inning.

"Wainwright wasn't himself," Bryan Price said. "He made one good pitch to Winker, a curveball inside.  They get the double play.  It allows them to walk Tucker and pitch to Homer to get out of the inning."

Bailey was handed a three-run lead but ran into double trouble.  Jose Martinez doubled off the left centerfield wall.  Yadier Molina dumped a single in front of Jesse Winker in right as Martinez stopped at third.  The Cards were just getting started.  Kolten Wong, Randall Grichuk and Greg Garcia all doubled to put St. Louis up 4-3.  Wainwright made the first out with a sacrifice bunt moving Garcia to third.  Bailey rallied, striking out Carpenter looking and Pham swinging to end the inning.

"His games have been divided," Price said. "There are days when he is sharp but on days when he isn't he's vulnerable to the big inning.  We don't want to concede to his return from injury."

The Cards threatened Bailey again in the third.  Paul DeJong singled and Martinez walked.  Both runners moved up on Molina’s fly to deep center but two pop ups to the infield thwarted the Cardinals plans.

Bailey broke down completely in the fourth.  He was hit hard and soft with a couple walks thrown in.  Garcia walked to open the inning.  Wainwright moved him to second with another sacrifice bunt.  Carpenter walked.  Pham blooped a single.  DeJong beat out a dribbler in front of the plate but Martinez unloaded with his eighth home run. It was his first career grand slam and the seventh Reds’ pitching has allowed this year.  Molina singled to chase Bailey from the game

Lisalverto Bonilla, just arrived from Louisville took over.  Bailey lasted 3 1/3 innings allowing 10 runs on 10 hits and four walks.  The 10 runs are a career high bor Bailey.

"I had not command," Bailey said.  "I just didn't have it. It was one of those days, I didn't perform well and it cost our team the game."

The Cardinals weren’t yet finished.  Wong singled off Bonilla. Garcia walked to load the bases.  Luke Voit batted for Wainwright.  He hit a ball down the rightfield line that was ruled fair by firstbase umpire Jim Reynolds.  The Reds asked for a review.  The call stood because it was too close to review.  Voit was credited with two RBI.  Carpenter capped the nine-run inning with a triple.

After hitting two balls deep on the warning track Suarez hit his 17th home run of the season off John Brebbia in the eighth inning.

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