Another opportunity slipped through the Cincinnati Reds hands to get back to their winning ways, dropping the conclusion of the suspended game from Monday night.
Ahead of the conclusion of the contest, it was discussed how one run may make all the difference, and boy did it ever. Punching across just a single run in the top of the seventh, the Pirates went on to win 8-7, handing the Reds yet another one run loss.
Hoping to minimalize the workload of his staff, skipper Bryan Price sent Sam LeCure out to resume action. His plan backfired when Russell Martin drove in the league’s reigning MVP in Andrew McCutchen, nudging the Bucs ahead.
It may very well be the fact that the temperatures were nearing freezing in Cincinnati, but Sam LeCure did not look right. Not getting as much velocity on his fastball as usual, LeCure attempted to rely more on his breaking ball than he is accustomed to. If you harken back to Spring Training, he was battered all over the yard. With injuries already crippling the bullpen, LeCure is the type of competitor that would not easily bow out if he feels his team needs him. Hopefully, all is squared away with LeCure, as he will be an integral part of the Reds solidifying leads at the end of ballgames.
Chances were a plenty through the final three innings against the lethal Pirates ‘pen. Neither Joey Votto nor Brandon Phillips were able to drive in Ramon Santiago from scoring position against left-hander Tony Watson in the seventh, letting the leadoff basehit go to waste.
With the momentum teetering towards the Redlegs, Devin Mesoraco hoped to surprise Pirates set-up man Mark Melancon when he swung at a 3-0 cutter in the bottom of the eighth. Unfortunately, for Mesoraco, the Buccos had him played perfectly and his bouncer up the middle was fielded with ease, ending the last real threat the team had.
This being the fifth separate series on the year, the Reds are yet to win an opener. For a team that preaches winning series is the most important of all, it’s quite difficult to battle back from an early deficit. Sitting at an unflattering 4-9, they look to right the ship later on this evening against Gerrit Cole and the Pirates, as Mike Leake takes the hill in their backing.