The Cincinnati Reds dropped the last game of their series against the Washington Nationals. But, they were still able to wrangle two-of-three from the National League East leaders. Washington snapped the Reds season-high four-game winning streak. Even in defeat, the Reds seemed to look like a different team. Is this the team Reds faithful has been waiting on?
The Reds jumped on the Nats early and had a 5-0 lead, after two frames. It seemed as if the Reds were going to get a well deserved sweep of the Nationals. As fate would have it, the pitching finally resorted to its previous state of unreliability.
“Boy that was an exciting game,” Nationals managerDusty Baker said, via Cincinnati Reds. “We had some guys that had good games, it was sort of a tale of three games all in one. They jumped us, we jumped them back and then we held on at the end when we were in trouble.”
The Redlegs took an early lead, with a heavy barrage in the second inning. They belted out five singles and a double, take a commanding lead. Reds starter Jon Moscot couldn’t nail down the victory. He proceeded to give up long balls to Daniel Murphy and Wilson Ramos, in the fourth inning.
If there’s a silver lining to the loss, a section belongs to Moscot. He understood the mistakes he made to the batters he faced.
“I hung a slider to Ramos, he hit it out. I didn’t get the ball in and up to Murphy, and he put a good swing on it. I think he’s a pretty good hitter right now, and then things just got a little out of hand after that. That’s on me to kind of limit the damage there, and it’s definitely a learning experience.”
The Reds have gotten better. Over the past games, the Reds have discovered they have an offense. The pitching staff has suddenly realized it’s okay to get batters out. Suddenly, Cincinnati is looking like a team that won’t end the season as a laughingstock. With a little luck, they may be able to avoid losing 100 games. But, the season is still young.
There’s a chance that the Reds could make the season entertaining. Joey Votto isn’t hitting that ball at the same clip as his 2015 campaign, but he seems to be showing signs of life. Adam Duvall has set a torrid pace. During the Reds’ win on Saturday, Duvall smashed home run No. 16. Over his last 13 games, he’s homered nine times.
“It’s been great. It’s always fun when you get good pitching and good hitting. Earlier in the year, we were struggling to get things going.”
The Reds are finding their composure at the right time. After a day off on Monday, the Reds start a three-game series with the St. Louis Cardinals. Cincinnati will have John Lamb on the mound. The Cards will start Mike Leake. It will be Leake’s first time in Great American Ball Park since being traded last July.
Dusty Baker’s return to GABP was bittersweet. The Nats lost two games to Dusty’s former team, but throttled the Reds in the finale. With a great showing against the Nats, the Reds look like they may have some life left. Tuesday’s battle with the Cardinals will show how far Price and the Reds have evolved. As long as the Reds can keep it close, they have a chance to win another series.
Turning things around takes one game, one series at a time.
[Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images]