Cincinnati Reds fall to Phillies as Finnegan, offense struggle

May 13, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Brandon Finnegan (29) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
May 13, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Brandon Finnegan (29) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /
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Wins continue to be elusive for the Cincinnati Reds in Citizens Bank Park.

After the first series of the season, there were many Reds fans wishing the Reds could play the Philadelphia Phillies every game. Those folks might be reconsidering now.

It was one bad inning that did in the Reds, as the bottom of the fourth inning saw a 2-0 lead turn into a 3-2 deficit, which would ultimately be the final tally. The Reds haven’t won a game in Philadelphia since 2006, and they’ll now have to win two in a row to keep the streak from extending another year.

Wildness hurts Finnegan

One of the bugaboos for Brandon Finnegan has been his command, and it came back to bite him on Friday. The southpaw nearly threw as many balls (42) as strikes (43), elevating his pitch count to 85 by the end of the fourth inning, which would be his last. He walked five in total, while allowing three runs and four hits. Despite his erratic control, he was able to keep the Phillies off the board until the fourth, when he walked two batters before giving up a two-run triple to Tyler Goeddel to tie the game. A successful suicide squeeze bunt by pitcher Jeremy Hellickson then put Philadelphia in front and Finnegan on the hook for the loss.

Punchless offense

The Reds had trouble getting anything going against Hellickson on Opening Day, and that was the case again their second time seeing him. The right-hander struck out nine in seven innings of work, allowing just four hits and a walk. When the Reds did score off of him in the second inning, it was because Goeddel dropped a routine fly ball in left field to allow a pair of runs. Things didn’t turn around once the Reds finally got into the Phillies’ bullpen, as Hector Neris and Jeanmar Gomez combined for two shutout innings to close the game out.

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Duvall keeps mashing

Jesse Winker will likely be the man patrolling left field by the beginning of next year, but Adam Duvall is showing he belongs in the majors and can be a valuable player moving forward. While the Reds’ offense managed just four hits as a whole — and none after the fourth inning — Duvall continued to show the world why he won the left field job outright shortly after the season began. The 27-year-old went 2-for-3 with a double and scored one of the two Cincinnati runs. In the month of May, Duvall is hitting .314/.368/.714 with two doubles and four home runs.

Notes:

  • The Cincinnati bullpen did its job well, as Steve Delabar, J.C. Ramirez and Blake Wood combined to toss four scoreless innings, allowing just a hit apiece.
  • Hellickson owned the entire Reds lineup, but it was his continued dominance of Joey Votto that was eyebrow-raising. After going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts on Friday, Votto is now 0-for-6 with five strikeouts against the Phillies righty.
  • Manager Bryan Price was not in the dugout for the game, as he was serving a one-game suspension handed down to him by MLB after he was ejected from the Reds’ contest with the Pirates on Wednesday. Bench coach Jim Riggleman took over the managerial duties for the night.