Cincinnati Reds: Several players redeemed themselves on Friday night

ST LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 21: Raisel Iglesias #26 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates after closing out the ninth inning. The Cincinnati Reds defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 4-2. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
ST LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 21: Raisel Iglesias #26 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates after closing out the ninth inning. The Cincinnati Reds defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 4-2. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images) /
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The Reds bounced back to take Game 2 versus the Cardinals.

What a difference a day makes, huh? After squandering a 4-2 lead on Thursday night, Cincinnati Reds closer Raisel Iglesias was summoned by David Bell to get the final three outs on Friday at Busch Stadium. This time, Iglesias mowed down the opposition in order and the Reds took home the W. But Iggy wasn’t alone, as several Reds redeemed themselves on Friday night.

While most of the focus will be on Matt Davidson’s pinch-hit grand slam in the sixth inning, the Reds slugger wasn’t the only player who helped Cincinnati earn a victory last night. How about the performance from starting pitcher Anthony DeSclafani?

DeSclafani was rocked in his previous outing against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Disco only went two innings and allowed nine earned runs on nine hits while striking out just one batter. Last night was a bit improvement from that horrendous performance.

While DeSclafani wasn’t as sharp as some fans would like, the box score tells a different story. Disco went just 4.1 innings, but only allowed two earned runs on three hits. The four walks issued by the right-hander were a bit perplexing, but DeSclafani was able to work around them and totaled 81 pitches before being lifted for Michael Lorenzen.

Speaking of Lorenzen, he’s definitely been a different pitcher over his last two outings. After an awful performance against the Milwaukee Brewers on August 9th in which he didn’t even record an out and allowed three runs to cross the plate, it was good to see Lorenzen bounce back on August 13th against the Pirates. The right-hander went 3.1 innings and struck out two.

Last night, Lorenzen walked the first batter he faced to load the bases, but induced a force out of Brad Miller and followed it up by getting Tyler O’Neill to pop out to Mike Moustakas. The damage was limited to just one run which was charged to DeSclafani.

After the Cincinnati Reds took a 4-2 advantage in the sixth following Davidson’s 449-foot grand slam, Lorenzen was kept in the game and took care of business. He struck out Dexter Fowler, induced a pop out from Reds killer Yadier Molina and recorded his second strikeout of the night following a called strike three on a 98-MPH fastball that whizzed past Harrison Bader.

Tyler Thornburg and Amir Garrett did their jobs in the seventh and eighth innings respectively, setting the stage for David Bell to turn to his closer Raisel Iglesias. Thursday night was one that Iglesias would just as soon forget after hitting the first batter he faced and then committing a balk with the bases loaded that allowed the tying run to score.

Iggy pulled the string on an 89-MPH changeup, striking out Fowler. Molina followed and hit the very first pitch he saw into the glove of right fielder Nick Castellanos. The final out came when Dylan Carlson weakly grounded the ball back to Iglesias who threw onto Joey Votto at first base, sealing the win for the Redlegs.

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Last night was as close to a “must win” as the Reds have had all season. Following Thursday night’s implosion, it was good to Iglesias get back on the horse. As a relief pitcher, you have to have a short memory. Speaking of which, the team needs to put last night’s victory behind them and focus on Saturday’s matchup against the Cardinals.