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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.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Scooter Gennett's Late Slam Plants Padres

Scooter Gennett hit his second grand slam of the season to bring the Reds a come-from-behind 10-3 win over the San Diego Padres.

Two rookie pitchers had a duel in the sun but the Reds scored eight runs in the last two at bats against the Padres’ bullpen.

"Scooter didn't miss the one pitch he got to hit in his at bat,"  Bryan Price said.  "We had a lot of good at bats om that inning.  We grinded out some walks to get to Scooter.  Hand is tough on lefties but I don't like to pinch hit for the regulars unless there is a long history with a pitcher."

The San Diego Padres, Dinelson Lamet and the Reds’ Luis Castillo battled in the finale of the four-game series   It was a 3-2 game in favor of the Padres when the rookies left the game.. 

The Reds found home plate first.  Eugenio Suarez was hit by a Lamet pitch one out into the second inning. Patrick Kivlehan, making his second start in a row, singled.  Tucker Barnhart, who got a rest on Wednesday, drilled a double past Wil Myers at firstbase.  Both runners scored to give Castillo and the Reds the early advantage.

Castillo stifled the Padres on one hit over three innings but Myers cracked his 23rd home run of the season to cut the lead in half.

San Diego found more pitches to its liking in the fifth frame.  three singles and Cory Spangenberg’s RBI double tied the game.  Jose Pirela, who has found Reds’ pitches to his liking all season, singled to put the Padres ahead by a run.  Pirela was 7-for-14 in the series with two home runs and three RBI coming into the game.  He walked twice and singled in his first three at bats against Castillo.

"Castillo was phenomenal," Price said.  "I like the way he competes." 

Lamet walked Joey Votto to start the Reds’ sixth.  Manager Andy Green brought in University of Dayton grad, Craig Stammen to face Adam Duvall.  Stammen broke the cleanup hitter’s bat on a 5-4-3 double play.  The Reds loaded the bases after that.Gennett singled.  Suarez walked and Kivlehan was hit by a pitch.  This time Barnhart grounded out to secondbase.

Castillo struck out pinch hitter Dusty Coleman, who reached base on a passed ball.   Bryan Price summoned Wandy Peralta to keep the Padres close.  Carlos Asauje singled down the line in right.  Jesse Winker fielded it as Coleman went to third but he threw behind Asuaje and the Reds ran him down for the Reds’ Major League leading, 30th outfield assist.  Spangeberg was out when Barnhart fielded his nubber in front of the plate and threw Spangeberg out with Coleman holding.  Drew Storen relieved Peralta and walked the red hot Pirela for the third time in the game.  Solarte grounded out to Gennett, as the Reds escaped harm.

The Reds threatened Kirby Yates in the bottom of the seventh.  Winker walked and Cozart was the third Reds’ batter hit by a pitch, bringing up Votto, looking to extend his hitting streak to 15 games.  The count went to 2-2.  Green brought in Brad Hand in the middle of the at bat. Votto walked that was changed to Hand.  Duvall struck out swinging.  Gennett unloaded the bases with his 19th home run on the first pitch by Hand.  It was Gennett's second grand slam of the season.  Eugenio Suarez belted his 20th of the season. 

"I was trying to stay up the middle," Gennett said.  "He (Hand) has a good slider. He was trying to get ahead.  I didn't want to fall behind in the count.  I wanted to stay aggressive."

The rally snapped Hand’s string of scoreless innings at 24..

Austin Brice pitched a scoreless inning.

Cozart hit his 14th home run with a man on in the eighth.  Votto extended his hitting streak to 15 games with his 31st home run..

Raisel Iglesias pitched a scoreless ninth.  The Reds' bullpen covered three scoreless innings with Storen improving his record to 3-2.

"The bullpen came in and performed," Price said.

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