Amidst the smog and cloudy sky above the House that Ruth built, the Cincinnati Reds dropped their second consecutive game in the Bronx to the New York Yankees, this time by a final of 7-1.
If playing the Yankees is not strange enough, what took place on the diamond made even less sense. There was a non-quality start, a dropped fly ball from Jay Bruce, and bloops and bleeders sprayed all over by the Bronx Bombers.
An old enemy appeared in the form of Carlos Beltran, belting a hanging 0-2 curveball amongst the people in the bottom of the second inning. Up to that point, Simon had retired the first five batters he had faced. On a seemingly innoxious hanging breaking ball, the downfall of the afternoon began.
For only the third time all season, Simon turned in a start that was not of the quality variety. He would allow four runs (only two were earned) and five hits over just five innings of work. There would be two perfect innings mixed in, but Simon’s afternoon mostly consisted of pitching out of the stretch.
A routine fly ball began the bottom of the third with Jay Bruce camped under it, until a sure out turned into a man on second. Always a perennial Gold Glove candidate, Bruce has made more extraordinary plays than he has lackadaisical errors. Regardless of prior experience, the Yankees would steal a run due to Bruce’s mistake.
In just his second start as a New York Yankee, Brandon McCarthy picked up his first victory with his new club. Known as a groundball artist of the highest degree, McCarthy reared back and found an extra gear on Saturday, striking out nine over his six innings of work. The club would strike out 13 times total without so much as drawing a walk over the course of the game.
The lone run on the board for the Redlegs came via the long ball. Chris Heisey connected with a giant blast for his fourth home run of the season in the fifth. Making a spot start as the designated hitter, Donald Lutz would double immediately following the blast, marking the last true opportunity the Reds would have to erase the deficit.
Good things came in threes for the Yankees, as leadoff man Brett Gardner (who as you may remember was swapped for Brandon Phillips in the off-season before Phillips requested a contract extension, and thusly, turned down the trade) drove in three runs in three consecutive at-bats. Light-hitting eighth place batter Brian Roberts would also use the number three to his advantage, scoring three times in the 7-1 victory.
The game got out of control in the sixth when J.J. Hoover entered. An unfortunate victim of infield singles, broken bat hits and the enigma of Kelly Johnson, Hoover watched as his ERA now sits at nearly five and a half. Yielding three runs (all earned) and four hits while recording just three outs, the nightmare season for Hoover continues. Sitting at 1-7 with a 5.49 ERA, the man considered a future option at closer when the season began has relegated himself to the proverbial low-man on the totem pole.
Even the bullpen of the Bronx Bombers was on point, giving up just a double to Billy Hamilton in their three combined innings of work. While it was not the shutdown stuff of Dellin Betances and David Robertson, the bats were still unable to muster even a whimper.
Sunday afternoon will prove insignificant in terms of winning the series as the Yankees have already wrapped up that task, but Johnny Cueto, or “Johnny Beisbol” takes to the mound for the Redlegs in an attempt to salvage a single game. At 1:05 p.m. the first pitch will take place between Cueto and Yankees starter Hiroki Kuroda.
Tags: Cincinnati Reds