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Posted on March 7, 2019 at 12:47 AM.

After splitting the first home-stand series with Milwaukee, the Reds got a day off, then played their first interleague series with the Baltimore Orioles. The Reds were (8-5) and 3 games back of the Cubs in the NL Central. The Orioles (4-7) and 3.5 back of the Yankees.


CIN - Sonny Gray (1-0) vs BAL - Dylan Bundy (0-1)

SP Sonny Gray would start out the game pitching well, only giving up 1 run in the first 4 innings of play, but hit a snag and gave up 2 more runs in the fifth. Trailing in the bottom of the fifth, 0-3, the Reds managed to score 1 run and had 2 runners on when Sonny's turn to bat came up. Sonny was pulled for a pinch hitter, Hernan Iribarren, Hernan roped one to RF Mark Trumbo for the final out of the inning.

Orioles SP Bundy pitched well, 7.0 IP and 1 run, in the 8th score still 3-1 in favor of Baltimore, Votto doubled. Manager Buck Showalter would relieve Bundy with RP Liranzo, this would be good for the Reds as the absolutely pounced all over Liranzo. C Devin Mesoraco would double driving in Votto, and a barrage of hits followed with the Reds scoring a total of 5 runs in the 8th inning. Liranzo left pitching only 1/3 of an inning, giving up 5 hits, 4 runs plus the inherited run from Bundy. RP Brach would come in and quiet the Reds. But the damage had been done, the Reds would go on to win the series opener 6-3. CP Jonathan Broxton would record his 6th save of the season. SP/LRP Brandon Finnegan would get his second win out of the bullpen.

Lots of hits were spread around, but only 1B Joey Votto would get more than one hit in the game. Joey went 3 for 4 with a run scored. Lf Andrew Benintendi and SS Zack Cozart would make their hits count as they each left the yard.


CIN - Mike Leake (1-0) vs BAL - Chris Tillman (1-1)

Cincy's SP Mike Leake coming off a complete game win versus the Brewers last game, hoped to continue his strong pitching. The Reds would jump out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the 3rd, this would be all they would need as Leake continued to dominate, going 8 innings, allowing only 3 hits with 0 runs and 8 strikeouts. CP Jonathan Broxton would come out in the 9th to re-court another save, his 7th.

The Reds bats were a little less productive this game, getting only 4 hits, but getting 2 needed runs. 2B Scooter Gennett left the yard and CF Drew Stubbs drove in the other run of this low scoring affair. No home runs for SP Mike Leake this game, DARN!, hoping to start a streak.


CIN - Matt Belisle (1-1) vs BAL - Vidal Nuno (2-0)

So can the Reds do it? Can they sweep the Orioles? Lets find out...

SP Matt Belisle was back on the mound after leaving his last start in the first after getting drilled in the shin and being saddled with a loss after 0.0 innings pitched. Baltimore would score 1 run in the top of the 5th and then again 1 run in the 7th off Besile. Belisle would be lifted in the seventh with 2 runners on and his pitch count at 102, he pitching 6.2 innings allowing 4 hits with 2 runs and striking out 7. Not too bad, unfortunately the Reds bats just were not doing much. SP/LRP Bronson Arroyo would get the nod, he closed out the 7th stranding the Orioles other 2 base runners.

In the bottom of the 8th C Devin Mesoraco would get a single and would be promptly replaced with UT Hernan Iribarren. Hernan's speed would diffidently be a factor as he crossed home plate way quicker than Mesoraco would have on a 2 run home-run by 3B Travis Shaw, tying the score at 2-2. Bronson would continue to pitch well, going into extra innings, pitching 4.1 innings in relief allowing no hits and striking out 6 batters. Arroyo would be pulled for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the 11th.

Top of the 12th and RP J.J. Hoover pitching, Orioles 1B Chris Davis would put one over the wall in right-center, giving Baltimore the lead, 3-2, and the win. So much for all of those Reds fans who brought their brooms to the game. Maybe the could help with the cleaning up in the stands. Boooooo!!!

Reds (10-6) now finish their home-stand by taking on the Cubs (13-2), and now lead the division over the Reds by 3.5 games. Man a sweep now would be great, also a miracle. We believe in magic...and you know that we do...

EXTRA NOTES: Manager Rocco Baldelli has brought the idea up to send one of his coaches on a KFC run for buckets of chicken. The Reds need their bats to come alive versus the Cubs, and a chicken sacrifice to the Baseball Gods might do the trick. Rocco claims to have watched a documentary and this practice worked.

Reds ownership approves, so they sent Front Office Staff to KFC, Popeye's and even Kroger's for rotisserie chickens.
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