Cincinnati Reds Top Rockies Behind 8 Scoreless Innings from Johnny Cueto
By Matt Wilkes
W: Johnny Cueto (7-6)
L: Chris Rusin (3-4)
SV: Aroldis Chapman (20)
With only five days left until the trade deadline, Johnny Cueto‘s time with the Cincinnati Reds is winding to a close. In what could prove to be his swan song with the Reds, he dominated the Colorado Rockies, firing eight shutout innings in a 5-2 win.
The gem nearly didn’t happened, as a deal that would’ve sent Cueto to the Royals was in place, but fell through before the game. That allowed Cueto to (potentially) leave the Reds on a good note and put any concerns from opposing teams to rest, following a four-inning, six-walk performance in his last outing.
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Cueto scattered four hits and one walk, avoiding any real trouble all night and never allowing more than one baserunner in an inning. He also tallied five strikeouts, three of them coming over his final two innings.
On offense, the Reds got at least one hit from everyone in the lineup minus Cueto, including a three-hit game from Billy Hamilton. Jay Bruce and Joey Votto also had multi-hit nights, with the latter driving in two runs as well. Todd Frazier also provided some fireworks, cracking a three-run home run as part of a four-run third inning.
The Reds would need those three runs that Frazier provided, as Jumbo Diaz ran into trouble with a 5-0 lead in relief of Cueto in the ninth. Diaz allowed singles to two of the first three hitters he faced before allowing a run on a ground out by Daniel Descalso. The game should’ve ended a batter latter, but shortstop Eugenio Suarez committed his ninth error of the season to allow another Rockies run and prolong the game.
Manager Bryan Price took no chances after that, calling on closer Aroldis Chapman, who need just three pitches to retire the only hitter he faced and pick up his 20th save of the year.
- Votto’s 2-for-4 effort marked his fifth consecutive game with two or more hits. He’s hitting .543/.628/.857 with three home runs, six runs batted in and eight walks against just four strikeouts since the All-Star break.
- Through the Reds managed 12 hits against Rockies pitching, they did not walk a single time.
Up Next: The Reds and Rockies conclude their series with the rubber match on Sunday at 4:10 p.m. EST. Michael Lorenzen, who nearly got an emergency start in place of Cueto on Saturday, will take the mound while Kyle Kendrick will oppose him.