Cincinnati Reds and extra innings don’t mix


Despite 11 hits and two walks, the Cincinnati Reds still could not generate enough offense to trump the Washington Nationals in the series opener on Friday. A walk-off double to the fence by Ben Revere served the Reds a 3-2 loss in 14 innings.

After a 12-16 month of June including a four-game losing skid to end the month, the Cincinnati Reds began July worse than they did last month. A four-game winning streak split between the Colorado Rockies and Nationals, Cincinnati was rolling to start June. This month? Another heart-wrenching extra inning loss undeniably setting the table for a lackluster run into the All-Star break despite three-hit days from Joey Votto, Eugenio Suarez and Tucker Barnhart.

Anthony DeSclafani stellar again

Now through five starts since his return from the disabled list, DeSclafani has done nothing but twirl gem after gem. Friday’s loss was maybe his best start this season. He allowed two earned runs over 6 2/3 innings, but fanned a season-best eight batters while topping the 100-pitch threshold (111 pitches) for the fourth time in five starts. His 68 strikes were his second most this season.

His season ERA now sits at 1.78 and has yet to allow more than two earned runs in any start this year. If the Reds stay on schedule, DeSclafani’s next start will come against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.

More from Reds News

Jay Bruce trying to stay in Cincinnati?

After somewhat of a torrid start to the season — especially considering Bruce’s standards following his past two seasons — Bruce’s trade value was skyrocketing once again with contenders keeping a close eye on the left-handed slugger.

Yet, Bruce ended a seven-game hitting streak, six of which were one-hit games, by going 0 for 5 (0 for 2 with RISP) and dropping his season average to .274 — still highest among Reds starters. With his defense declining substantially this season, his offense possesses almost all of his value, especially with American League teams looking at him as a possible designated hitter platoon.

While there is not much reason to think one 0-fer game will demoralize both Bruce and any interested parties … well, actually there’s plenty reason. After hitting just a combined .222 over the last two seasons (1,073 at bats), one has reason to believe that this could be the beginning of a July slump that causes interested teams to shy away from a deal, even at a bottom-of-the-barrel price.

Joey Votto rolling now?

After a rough start to the season and an average that still sits at an underwhelming — for a $20 million man — .255, Joey Votto is hitting a stride to some degree. He has hits in three straight games, six of his last seven and has amassed 18 total hits over his past 15 games.

Of course, the Reds have just three wins in that 15-game span, but it’s never a bad thing to see the franchise player stringing together some hits at the top of a dismal lineup.

Next: How long should Billy Hamilton be a Red?

Best of the rest:

  • Adam Duvall went 2 for 6 with an RBI, but did strike out twice.
  • Billy Hamilton went 0 for 4, but did draw one of the Reds’ two walks and saw 23 pitches hitting in the No. 7 spot.
  • Ross Ohlendorf pitched 2 2/3 innings of relief, but allowed the game-winning run in the 14th inning.

The Reds and Nationals reconvene tomorrow at 7:15 p.m. for the second of this three-game series.