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Best of 2012: #1 Performances

If you’ve been along this journey of 2012′s top Reds performances, I think you have a good idea what will be the top position player and starting pitcher performance. But let’s relive ‘em anyway.

Top Player Performance: Joey Votto, May 13 v. Washington Nationals

The day didn’t get off to a great start. It was Mother’s Day and the weather had pushed back the start of the game a handful of hours. Even when the weather “gave way” (I still don’t believe it actually did), it was still damp and gloomy. That didn’t deter Joey Votto one bit.

Votto’s first at-bat against Edwin Jackson

Three and a half hour rain delay? Okay, so I was off a little. I hope it would be worth it for those that stayed. Well, at the Good Guys got off to a 1-0 lead. On Votto’s next AB, the Nationals had a 2-1 lead…

Got Jackson again. Two ABs, two HRs, two RBI.

In the bottom of the 6th with the Reds trailing 4-3 and Tom Gorzelanny on the mound, Votto would put a charge into another one, but it didn’t quite have the distance. On Votto’s next time to the plate, the Nationals had a comfy 6-3 lead. With Drew Stubbs on first, Votto would double. He wand Stubbs would score on a Jay Bruce double. Still, the Good Guys were behind 6-5.

In the ninth inning, Nats skipper Davey Johnson went to his flame-throwing closer (at that time anyway) Henry Rodriguez. Ryan Hanigan started the ninth with single. He would be sacrificed to second by Wilson Valdez. Rodriguez would retire Miguel Cairo on a pop out. That still left two batters before Votto could come to the plate again. And wouldn’t you know…

Drew Stubbs walked. So did Chris Heisey…leaving #19 to stake his claim as our top performance of 2012 and MLB history…

The first time a player hit three home runs in a game with the last HR being a grand slam walk-off. A stretch? Sure. this still gives me goosebumps.

2012′s Top Starting Performance: Homer Bailey, September 28 at Pittsburgh

Honestly, I don’t need to say a thing. Thanks to the fine folks at MLB.com, you can enjoy every out from Homer’s game. What better could you do over the next five minutes?

2012′s Top Relief Performance: Aroldis Chapman, May 27 v. Colorado Rockies

It would be easy to pick the game where Chapman did his roll, but Chappy did fantastic work in this game against the Rockies.

The Reds entered the 8th inning with a 7-4 lead over the Rox. It would be that way for long. After Wilin Rosario grounded out to start the inning, Dexter Folwer took a Mat Latos pitch to the moon deck in right to bring Colorado within two runs at 7-5. Dusty would replace Latos with Jose Arredondo. A walk, a stolen base and fielder’s choice had Eric Young at third and presented Dusty with a dilemma. Do you…

May 27, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Chapman pitches during the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Great American Ball Park. The Reds defeated the Rockies 7-5. (Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports)

A. Keep Arredondo in the game to face Carlos Gonzalez. After all, Arredondo was at this time of the season more effective against lefty batters than righties, or
B. Bring in Mr. 105

If you’re answer was B, then you made the same decision Dusty did. And in case you’re wondering, I do have a slight smirk on my face as I typed those words.

So all Chapman did was strike out CarGo on four pitches. He would also retire Troy Tulowitzki on the 8th pitch of the at-bat on a deep fly out to Drew Stubbs.

Starting the 9th, Chapman would walk Jason Giambi and Jeremy Guthrie would pinch-run for him. A lineout to BP by Michael Cuddyer and a game ending DP by Jordan Pacheco was all for Colorado on this day.

As I ponder a little more, I have to do this…

Nope. Dusty didn’t know.

I hope you have enjoyed out performances and Reds recalls for this past season, I know I have enjoyed fining these vids and watching them again.

One last thing…

On behalf of the entire Blog Red Machine staff, may all Reds fans and our readers have a Happy New Year.

Topics: Aroldis Chapman, Cincinnati Reds, Homer Bailey, Joey Votto

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