Reds Salvage Series Closer Against Marlins

The Reds “pulled off” an 11-inning, 5-4 win against the Marlins, yet Mat Latos‘ pitching line won’t be the best he’s posted this season, but considering the Reds had dropped the first two games in the new Marlins Stadium, Latos delivered an outing the Reds needed. Sure, he allowed four runs, and of course, there will be those that will dispute if Latos should have even been in the game in the 8th inning. He did pitch well enough to warrant a “W”.

Heading into the bottom of the 8th, Latos had delivered 95 pitches with the Reds holding a 4-3 lead. Within seven pitches (and four batters), the Marlins had tied the game at 4 and were still threatening to score more. The last four pitches Latos would deliver were to issue and intentional walk Giancarlo Stanton. He did deserve a better fate. A far better fate.

The bullpen was, well, the bullpen. The best in baseball as we’ve seen all season. Another brilliant performance as Sam LeCure (1.1 IP), Sean Marshall (0.2 IP), Logan Ondrusek (0.1 IP), and Jonathan Broxton (1 IP) would combine to shutout the Marlins permitting only one hit and two walks. The quartet would also record six whiffs.

Back to Latos.

For much of the early part of 2012, a portion of the Reds fanbase has constantly bemoaned and criticized the deal that brought the tall Floridian to the Reds. After all, Cincinnati has delivered four highly thought of prospects to the San Diego Padres in order to acquire the services of Latos. Hard to ever be the one to come out on top in a four-for-one deal, but Latos has slowly begun to swing fans in his favor.

He’s done so with his performance.

April was none too kind to Latos as he was 1-2 with a 5.97 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in five starts. The Twitterverse was a virtual Latos hating haven on days when he took the mound. Since then, we’ve seen a different Latos. Including his outing today, Latos is 11-2 with an ERA of 3.36 and a WHIP of 1.14 since the beginning of May. A more important trend might be the in the 25 games in Latos has started, the Good Guys are now 18-7. When Latos pitches, the Reds win.

What might be even more striking is that Latos’ ERA is lower at GABP (3.53) than it is on the road (4.07).

No, Mat Latos did not get the decision in today’s game. Yes, the Reds won. Magic number down to 5.

Tags: Cincinnati Reds Mat Latos

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