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KSReds: Cincinnati Reds Sweep the Chicago White Sox

Brandon Ramseyby:Brandon Ramsey04/15/24

BRamseyKSR

Taking care of business against the teams you are supposed to beat is a huge part of being successful. Over the course of a long, 162-game season you will lose some games, or even series, that you aren’t supposed to lose. However, when the opportunity arises to sweep a lesser opponent you need to take advantage. That is exactly what the Cincinnati Reds did over the weekend against the Chicago White Sox.

It was total domination throughout as the Cincinnati Reds would sweep the series by a combined score of 27-5. Cincinnati got three very good starting pitching performances and early run support in each contest. Ultimately, the Reds would improve to 9-6 on the season while the White Sox fell to a MLB worst 2-13. It is far too early to start watching the standings, but just to set the stage as to where things stand currently, Cincinnati is tied with the Chicago Cubs sitting one and a half games behind both the Milwaukee Brewers and Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League Central.

After the series sweep on Chicago’s south side, Cincinnati will remain on the road and head west to Seattle for a three game series against the Mariners. The pitching rotation flips back over to Frankie Montas who will take the ball at 9:42 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday night. Hunter Greene and Andrew Abbott are also slated to start in Seattle. Cincinnati will then take Thursday off before returning to Great American Ball Park for a weekend series with the Angels.

Christian Encarnacion-Strand, Elly De La Cruz Power Reds Win

After some offensive struggles on Tuesday and Wednesday that led to losing a series against the Milwaukee Brewers, the Cincinnati Reds offense broke back out on the south side of Chicago on Friday. Christian Encarnacion-Strand busted out of his early season slump going 2-4 with three RBI. He got the Reds on the board in the top of the first with a sacrifice fly. Then, in the third, Jake Fraley stayed hot to maintain his .400 average plating a run on an infield single. Next up was Elly De La Cruz who launched one 449 feet into right centerfield for his fourth home run of the season. Da La Cruz would match CES finishing 2-4 with three RBI. Tyler Stephenson made it back-to-back home runs in the third expanding Cincinnati’s lead to 6-0.

On the mound, Andrew Abbott cruised while pitching with the lead. The young left-hander turned in seven beautiful innings of work allowing just one run on four hits. Emilio Pagan and Bucker Farmer ended it with clean frames in the eighth and ninth respectively.

After Encarnacion-Strand really blew it open with a two run single in the eighth, Santiago Espinal singled to right in the ninth inning plating both Fraley and De La Cruz. That would cap off the night off and set the final score of 11-1. The win kept Cincinnati from falling below .500 for the first time this season.

Nick Lodolo Dominates in Season Debut

Aside from an exciting top of the second inning, there wasn’t much happening in Saturday afternoon’s matchup. The Cincinnati Reds exploded for five runs in the second and that would prove to be all of the offense in the game. Luke Maile plated a pair with a single to left field to get the Reds on the board. Then, Spencer Steer cleared the bases with a three-run double making it a 5-0 game. From there, Nick Lodolo and company cruised on the mound to secure the series victory with a 5-0 win.

Lodolo couldn’t have been sharper in his season debut. The talented left-hander pitched five and two-thirds shutout innings allowing just one hit and striking out 10 batters. Fernando Cruz and Brent Suter were equally sharp behind Lodolo to close out the game. In total, the Cincinnati Reds pitching staff struck out 15 White Sox’ batters while allowing just two hits. The Reds only managed four hits themselves, but they were timely enough to create the big second inning and win the game.

Reds Get the Brooms Out, Sweep White Sox

The Chicago White Sox never stood a chance in this series. After 11-1 and 5-0 games on Friday and Saturday, the Cincinnati Reds finished off the sweep with a 11-4 victory on Sunday afternoon. Once again, the Reds struck early offensively putting up four runs in the top of the third inning. Christian Encarnacion-Strand continued to break out of his slump smashing a two-run home run to get on the board. Then, Jeimer Candelario plated two more to make it a 4-0 Reds advantage.

Chicago got two back in the bottom of the fourth, but Nick Martini answered with a two run home run in the top of the fifth inning to recapture a four run lead. Martini, Tyler Stephenson, and Encarnacion-Strand continued to pour it on in the seventh and Jonathan India set the eventual final score of 11-4 with a sacrifice fly in the ninth. The Reds scattered 11 hits, drew eight walks, and benefited from three White Sox’ errors in the game.

On the mound, Graham Ashcraft allowed just one earned run in five and two-thirds innings while striking out eight. It was his second victory of the young season. Justin Wilson, Emilio Pagan, and Alexis Diaz were all sharp in relief as well.

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