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KSReds: Cincinnati Reds Bullpen Blows Ninth Inning Lead

Article written by:On3 imageBrandon Ramsey


On3 image
Photo by Dylan Buell | Getty Images

Another day, another brutal loss for the Cincinnati Reds. They just continue to pile up for a team that teases promise just enough to deliver disappointment. The 28-53 mark at the halfway point is the fewest wins for a Reds ball club since 1934. For those keeping track at home, that was a long time ago.

On Wednesday evening the Reds bullpen blew a 3-2 lead in the ninth inning needing just two more outs to secure the victory. Then, they gave up five runs in the top of the 10th which allowed the New York Mets to pull away and secure the series rubber match. Cincinnati has now lost three straight series.

Coming up next is a doubleheader on Thursday at Great American Ball Park against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Mike Minor is scheduled to start game one at 2:10 p.m. EST. At the time of this post, the game two starter has still not been announced. The Reds will then remain at home for a three-game weekend series against the Tampa Bay Rays. Luis Castillo, Hunter Greene, and Nick Lodolo are scheduled to take the mound in those games.

Hunter Greene Struggles Continue, Reds Lose Opener

There is no denying the fact that Cincinnati Reds star rookie Hunter Greene is facing some serious growing pains on the mound. The 22-year-old fell to 3-10 on the season on Monday in the Reds’ 7-4 loss to the New York Mets. His earned run average has ballooned to an ugly 6.01. Aside from a couple of truly remarkable outings, Greene simply has not pitched very well in the big leagues. In Monday’s loss, where Greene gave up two more home runs to reach 22 allowed on the season, he passed former Red Johnny Cueto for the most home runs allowed prior to the All-Star break by a rookie since 1947.

However, with that being said, there is no reason to panic. First and foremost, he is still just 22 years old. Oftentimes, even future Hall of Famers aren’t recording Major League innings at that age. Secondly, there is important context to add to the discussion. Current Reds ace Luis Castillo was 4-8 with a slightly worse ERA and 15 fewer strikeouts after his first 15 career starts. A career is not made or broken this early into a career. Greene’s talent is undeniable. Patience will be a virtue for Reds fans.

On Monday night, the Mets struck first with a three-run home run in the second inning. However, Brandon Drury answered with a three-run blast of his own in the bottom of the third to tie the game. Another long ball got New York back on top in the fifth and they never looked back. A seventh-inning homer by Nick Senzel pulled the Reds a little closer, but they would fall 7-4.

Nick Lodolo Dazzles in Return, Mike Moustakas Walks it Off

Cincinnati Reds rookie left-hander Nick Lodolo returned to the mound on Tuesday night for the first time since April 24th and was absolutely excellent. Lodolo pitched four and two-thirds innings of shutout baseball allowing just three hits while striking out eight. Unfortunately, for essentially the entire game, the Reds offense couldn’t get anything going.

Max Scherzer was also making a return on Tuesday night in his first action since May 18th. The soon-to-be 38-year-old was even more dominant for the New York Mets than Lodolo was for the Reds. Scherzer turned in six innings of two-hit shutout work while striking out 11 batters. The pitcher’s duel held the game scoreless all the way until the bottom of the ninth inning.

Tommy Pham led off the bottom of the ninth with a double to deep right field. Then, Tyler Naquin was intentionally walked to set up the potential double play before Donovan Solano was also walked to loaded the bases with no outs. Mike Moustakas then came to the play and delivered a sacrifice fly against a drawn in outfield to win the game in walk-off fashion for the Reds 1-0.

Reds Blow Ninth Inning Lead, Get Blasted in Extra Innings

Losses are not a surprising outcome on any night for this Cincinnati Reds ball club. However, Wednesday night’s loss stings a little bit because they were so close to victory. The Reds were just two outs away from winning the series, but the New York Mets sent the game to extra innings with a Starling Marte run scoring double. Then, in the top of the 10th inning, things really blew up.

Dauri Moreta allowed five runs, four earned, on three hits including a three-run home run to Brandon Nimmo that really put the game on ice. The Mets ended up winning 8-3 to win the series and move the Reds to 28-53 on the season. That puts them tied in the win column with the Oakland Athletics, but three games ahead still in the loss column, for the worst record in Major League Baseball.

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