Cincinnati Reds Top Brewers in Brandon Finnegan’s First MLB Start


5. 61. 3. 76.

W: Brandon Finnegan (4-0)

L: Zach Davies (1-2)

SV: Aroldis Chapman (31)

While Johnny Cueto continued to struggle in Kansas City, the centerpiece of the trade for him picked up his first win as a major league starter for the Cincinnati Reds.

That centerpiece, of course, is Brandon Finnegan, who turned in a strong outing on Friday to help the Reds top the Milwaukee Brewers and move out of the NL Central cellar.

Offense: The Reds were without Joey Votto due to a one-game suspension, but were able to generate plenty of offense without their offensive star. They wasted little time getting on the board off of rookie Zach Davies. In the first, Skip Schumaker hit a one-out single, moved into scoring position on a walk to Brandon Phillips and scored on a single by Todd Frazier. With the score tied at one in the fourth, Jay Bruce hit a solo homer, his 22nd of the year, and Adam Duvall added another run on a double. Insurance runs came from some unexpected sources in the late innings, as Jason Bourgeois bashed his third homer of the year in the seventh and Brennan Boesch drove home the Reds’ final run of the night with an eighth-inning single.

Starting Pitching: The aforementioned Finnegan was impressive in his first major league start, allowing only one run and three hits, while striking out four and walking two. He was removed after 75 pitches and five innings, tying his longest outing as a professional. The only damage against Finnegan came in the second inning when he was taken deep by Khris Davis for a solo home run.

Bullpen: Finnegan was relieved by Collin Balester, who was able to record only one out, giving up one run on two hits and a walk in the sixth. He was followed by Tony Cingrani, who struck out two to get out of the jam. Jumbo Diaz punched out two in a perfect seventh inning, striking out two. Sam LeCure started the eighth and, like Balester, recorded only one out. He gave up two hits, including a solo home run to Jason Rogers, before he was removed for Manny Parra, who retired the next two hitters. Aroldis Chapman picked up his 31st save in the ninth, striking out two and walking one.

Other Notes:

  • Duvall’s double was his first non-home run hit since joining the Reds.
  • Five different Reds reached base multiple times: Schumaker (two singles), Frazier (single, double), Bruce (homer, two walks), Eugenio Suarez (single, walk) and Tucker Barnhart (three walks).
  • Brayan Pena grounded out as a pinch hitter in the sixth inning as he appeared in his first game since Sept. 9. He had been dealing with a hamstring strain.

Up Next: Josh Smith will make his first big league start since July as he faces standout rookie Taylor Jungmann in game two. First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m. ET.

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