Heading into last night’s affair with the Florida Marlins, the slate couldn’t have looked better for the Cincinnati Reds.
They were facing a rookie pitcher that had surrendered as many walks as he had home runs in Marlins starter Jacob Turner. In six starts this season (three for the Detroit Tigers and three for the Fish), Turner had walked a total of eight. Same as far as home runs go, eight homers allowed. These numbers in 29.1 innings of work.
As they say…that’s why they play the games, and did Turner ever “play a game”.
He toyed with Reds hitters during his seven innings of work, his longest outing of the season. Turner allowed only a pair of hits (a Todd Frazier double in the 2nd and Joey Votto single in the 4th) and a pair of walks while striking out three Reds en route to his first NL win in a Marlins 4-0 victory. The bagel also represents only the third time all season the Reds were held without a run.
The only other Reds hit came from pinch-hitter Xavier Paul (off of Heath Bell) in the top of the 8th inning. It was Paul’s 10th pinch-hit since joining the Reds in mid-July. He is batting .357 in that role. Not a bad pickup. Paul’s 10 PH are represent a quarter of all Reds pinch-hits so far this season (40).
The Good Guys only left five runners on base and were 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position. That’s how overwhelmed they were by the Marlins hurlers.
The night wasn’t much better for Bronson Arroyo. In his 6 innings of work, he permitted four runs no nine hits including a 4th inning bomb off the bat of Greg Dobbs. Estimated distance: 389 feet. Seemed a bit longer.
In Arroyo’s six innings of work, he threw more pitches (106) than Turner did in his seven (101).
An interesting fact flashed across my Twitter timeline last night. In their last 12 series opening games, the Reds are 5-7. With winning series always being a “benchmark” for having success, dropping the first game of a series does make things a little more difficult to pull off a series win. In fact, in the previous six series where the Reds dropped the series opener, they are 1-4-1. The win came in a four game set in Chicago against the Cubs and the split was also a four game series which was in Philadelphia.
Take it back just a little more. Since the All-Star break. Cincy is only 10-9 in series opening games. That all looks a little gloomy until you see the Reds overall record since the break, which is 40-20. That is the best in the NL (Washington is 40-21) and second best in all of baseball to the Oakland A’s (40-18).
Magic Number down to 7…