On The Flip Side

Reds 4, Indians 3 (box)

Brandon Phillips, Home Run
Yep, we used to have this guy

My, how the tides turn.  We can now officially end any streaks out there in regards to starting pitchers.  Well, unless you want to go Major League and say “no earned runs by any pitcher that wasn’t called-up from Triple-A the day before.”  I guess that could work.  But Jeremy Sowers was less than spectacular yesterday, giving up three earned in five innings of work. 

Of course, the first two runs just had to be at the hands of Brandon Phillips, right?  Any chance that Phillips glares into the Tribe dugout each time he proceeds to produce for the Reds?  I wouldn’t put it past him given the past.  But it’s not like we didn’t come back to put the game within reach.

I refuse to think that the bats were working in this one.  We had zero hits in the first five innings and had to rely on one stint of three solo shots.  Again, only putting up runs in one inning.  We had the chance to pull ahead with two on in the seventh, but Jhonny Peralta had other ideas, grounding out to end the inning.

After a fluke hit that just happened to drop in between Casey Blake, Asdrubal Cabrera and David Dellucci to put men at second and third – one of which was on due to a walk – we ran into Adam Dunn with the bases loaded.  While this situation was eerilie familiar of the opening series game two summers ago (when the Reds came back to win on a walk-off grand slam by none other than Dunn himself), Jensen Lewis decided that it would be best to walk yet another guy, leading to the game-deciding run.

Talk about hitters park.  Seven runs scored, six of which came on the long ball.  The other, on the seven-inches-off-the-plate ball.


So, while we have been able to produce crazy-like starting pitcher numbers, here’s a quick look at the back end:

May 12: Rafael Betancourt: 1 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
May 15: Betancourt, again: 0.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
May 16: Jensen Lewis: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 0 K

Did I just single out the poor performances?  Sure.  But when your bats put up an average of 2.2 runs per game (for the week of May 12), you’re actually pretty fortunate to have gone 4-2 in said stretch.  But if we’re only putting up 2.2 runs, we can’t afford to have our bullpen giving up any on the back end.

It won’t get much easier with Aaron Harang (2-5, 3.32 ERA, 1.12 WHIP) taking the hill today against Fausto Carmona.  Hopefully Fausto keeps the ball on the ground as it was flying out of the park last night.  At least until Lewis one-hopped his pitches across the plate…