DeSclafani Solid In Return, as Reds Outlast A’s, 2-1

Photo courtesy of Scott Littleton/Blog Red Machine
Photo courtesy of Scott Littleton/Blog Red Machine /

If you like pitching match-ups, Friday’s Reds game against the Oakland A’s was for you.

Anthony DeSclafani made his 2016 debut and pitched brilliantly, save for one pitch. A’s pitcher Sonny Gray took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, but the Reds were able to score two runs in the seventh because of Adam Duvall’s bat and two wild pitches from Gray (who leads the league with 11) to win 2-1 on a beautiful night at Great American Ball Park.

DeSclafani’s Return

A’s catcher Stephen Vogt provided the only blemish in DeSclafani’s return to the mound for the first time in 2016. In the first inning, DeSclafani was able to get Vogt to strike out swinging with a slider inside. Vogt would win the second battle against DeSclafani, depositing a solo home run into the right field seats in the third.

In total, DeSclafani pitched six innings, giving up just one run on eight hits. He walked three and struck out two. He threw 65 of 102 pitches for strikes, which is rather good considering he hadn’t pitched in a major league game since September. He consistently hit 93-94 mph with his fastball and threw all of his pitches. It was a solid start for the 26-year-old, and Reds fans should be very happy he is back.

Duvall Delivers

It wasn’t a home run, but Duvall was able to contribute with his bat yet again. This time he lined a double down the third base line in the seventh that scored Brandon Phillips and tied the game at one. It also extended his hitting streak to eight games. His average is up to .269, his OPS is above .900 and he has reached the 40 RBI mark on the season. Is he an All-Star candidate?

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Defense Shines

It’s not normal to see the Reds in last place in MLB with 50 errors already this season, but on Friday, Reds fans got to see the defense with which they are familiar.

In the sixth, Jay Bruce cut down former Red Yonder Alonso at second trying to stretch a single into a double. It was his third assist of the season. Alonso must have forgotten that it’s probably best not to try to test Bruce’s arm. Zack Cozart had a diving stop up the middle in the first. And Joey Votto and Duvall each had nice plays at their respective positions.


  • The bullpen threw three scoreless innings. Yes, this is true. Blake Wood threw two solid innings. He walked one, but did not let it affect him and rebounded well. He also struck out two and got the win. Tony Cingrani pitched the ninth to get his sixth save of the season and was helped by a game-ending 5-4-3 double play.
  • Votto ran into some tough luck on Friday. He went 0-for-3 with a walk, but all three of his outs were hit to the warning track. If the outfield wall had been just 20 feet closer, he would have had a three-home run night.