So it didn’t quite work out the way he had wanted it to go.
Through 8.1 innings and the Reds holding a 2-1 lead, starter Mat Latos had thrown only 91 pitches, 66 of which were for strikes. He had escaped a bases loaded jam in the previous inning (that helps your strand rate), but skipper Dusty Baker pulled him after serving a triple to Marlins shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria.
To put it in perspective…
Fernando Rodney threw 19 balls in 2/3 of an inning.Mat Latos threw 25 balls in 8 1/3 innings.
— David Cameron (@DCameronFG) May 17, 2013
Instead of Latos getting that complete game, enter Aroldis Chapman. Marlins Park actually got a bit loud upon his entrance.
Well, loud considering there was an announced attendance of 16,680, the largest of the three game series. Just didn’t look like there were that many.
So all looked good at first. Chapman was registering triple digits as he did last evening. He got Placido Polanco to strikeout on five pitches. All were fastballs. Speeds: 99, 100, 100, 101, 100. Chapman attempted the same route with Marcell Ozuna…with much different results.
Ozuna would take a Chapman fastball and send it soaring toward whatever that thing is in left center. While the ball didn’t reach there or that little crevice just off to the left-hand side of it, it did travel a long way and Ozuna had himself a triple. Game tied, 2-2.
Despite the fact Chapman blew a save, and denying Latos yet another win, all appears well concerning the velocity of Chapman now.
Latos should be like 7-0, right? At least…
The Good Guys brought their bats in the 10th. It started with a Donald Lutz single. Shin-Soo Choo walked and Zack Cozart sacrificed Lutz to third and Choo to second. First base was open and Joey Votto came to the plate. You know what happened.
So Brandon Phillips came to the plate with bases loaded. He only leads the National League in RBI. BP hit one into left field that Juan Pierre caught. Needless to say, Lutz scored easily from third to put the Reds up 3-2. The next at-bat would be the key AB of the game.
With Jay Bruce coming to the plate, Marlins manager Mike Redmond had already used Mike Dunn, his lefty, in the 8th. Steve Cishek, who had entered the game in the 9th, stayed in to pitch to Bruce. Mistake as Bruce would drive in Choo and Votto to up the score to 5-2.
J.J. Hoover allowed a run in the Marlins half of the 10th. That ol’ familiar “walks will haunt”. With two outs, Hoover walked Nick Green, took 2nd on defensive indifference, and scored on a Matt Diaz pinch-hit single. That would be all for the Marlins as Pierre grounded out to BP. Game over. Reds win, 5-3. Chapman is credited with the win and Hoover picked up his 3rd save.