Cincinnati Reds Dominated by Matz, Mets in 7-2 Defeat


61. 7. 3. . 2

W: Steven Matz (1-0)

L: Josh Smith (0-1)

If this series wasn’t enough to convince the Cincinnati Reds’ brass to sell, I don’t know what will change their minds. The Reds were bad in every facet of the game in this series, culminating with a 7-2 loss in Sunday’s originally scheduled game as the were swept at the hands of the New York Mets.

Steven Matz was the story in this one, as the Reds fell victim to another pitcher making his big league debut. Much like Marlins’ rookie Justin Nicolino did to the Reds in his debut a week ago, Matz threw 7.2 innings of two-run, five-hit baseball, fanning six and walking three. The southpaw did it with the bat as well, notching a hit in all three of his at-bats and becoming the first pitcher in baseball history to drive in four runs in his first career start.

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The only runs the Reds managed against the rookie were on solo home runs. Brandon Phillips took Matz deep to lead off the game and Todd Frazier hit one in the fourth that tied the game at the time.

Josh Smith made his second career start for the Reds and threw the ball better than in his three-inning debut, but again battled control issues. The right-hander made it through five innings, exiting after 109 pitches and four walks, though he kept the Reds in the game by allowing only three runs. Only one of those runs was earned as Eugenio Suarez committed his fifth error in four games in the second inning, allowing two unearned runs to score on Matz’s RBI double.

The game got out of hand once Smith turned the ball over to Pedro Villarreal. After Villarreal put the first three runners of the sixth inning on base, Matz knocked in two more runs before another scored on a Phillips error. Curtis Granderson capped off his big series with his second RBI of the night in the eighth to knock Villarreal from the game and put one final dagger in the Reds.

Other Notes:

  • Jason Bourgeois was called up before the game as the 26th man for the “doubleheader” and made his first appearance with the Reds this season when he replaced Jay Bruce in right field as part of a double switch in the sixth. He struck out in his only plate appearance.
  • Bourgeois will apparently stay in Cincinnati, as Chris Dominguez was optioned to Triple-A Louisville after the game.
  • The offense as a whole struggled to get anything going against the Mets, but Joey Votto in particular had a hard time, going 0-for-11 at the plate with four strikeouts in the series. He did walk three times, however.

Up Next: The Reds return to Cincinnati on Monday, when they’ll try to rebound against the Minnesota Twins. Mike Leake will toe the rubber while Mike Pelfrey will start for the Twins. First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m. ET.

Next: Reds fall to Mets in 13 after walk-off error