Cincinnati Reds: Sixth inning solidified Cy Young Award for Trevor Bauer

CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 23: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 23: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /

Reds right-hander Trevor Bauer is the best pitcher in the National League.

Trevor Bauer is really good, and he’s not afraid to let you know it. While I typically prefer a more humble spirit, I respect Bauer’s confidence. Last night, on just three-days rest, the Cincinnati Reds starter went out and dominated the Milwaukee Brewers for eight innings. His performance during the sixth inning is what solidified his claim to this year’s Cy Young Award.

Bauer immediately took to his social media platform after last night’s game and tweeted two words; “Gimme dat.” The ‘dat’ is obviously a reference to the National League Cy Young Award, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more deserving candidate than Bauer.

Through five innings, Bauer allowed just one run and a three-run explosion in the bottom half of the fifth inning had the Reds out to 6-1 lead. However, trouble reared its ugly head in the top of the sixth inning.

Brewers catcher Jacob Nottingham reached base on a throwing error by Eugenio Suárez. Suárez fielded a ground ball and launched it over the head of first baseman Joey Votto, allowing Nottingham to reach base safely.

The next batter, Avisail García shot a sharp line drive into right-center field, and Nottingham chugged around second base on his way to third. The throw from Shogo Akiyama to third base was in time, but Suárez misplayed the ball and the Brewers had something cooking in the top of the sixth inning with runner on the corners and no one out.

Pitching coach Derek Johnson emerged from the Cincinnati Reds dugout to have a chat with the team’s ace. Whatever was said during the mound visit worked, because Trevor Bauer was locked in and laser focused.

The next batter was the ever-dangerous Christian Yelich. Bauer got ahead of the former MVP 0-2 before missing with a breaking ball. Sitting 1-2, Bauer dropped the hammer with an 82-MPH curveball and struck out Yelich. Afterwards, Bauer let out scream and was fired up for the next batter.

That man was Jedd Gyorko. After Bauer’s third pitch of the at-bat winded up in the dirt, Gyorko was ahead 2-1. However, a four-seamer on the outside corner brought the count to 2-2 and Bauer  induced a swing-and-miss from Gyorko, followed by another powerful scream.

Big Daniel Vogelbach represented the Brewers last gasp to scratch across some runs in the inning. Trevor Bauer attacked Vogelbach early with back-to-back fastballs. One missed and the other was fouled away. With the count holding steady at 1-1, Bauer hung a slider up in the zone, but Vogelbach didn’t swing; strike two.

With the powerful left-handed hitting Vogelbach digging in on the 1-2 pitch, Bauer dropped curveball into the dirt, it was successfully blocked by catcher Tucker Barnhart and Trevor Bauer erupted the mound with a roar and stared Daniel Vogelbach down as both men retreated to their respective dugouts.

That sequence right there proved why Trevor Bauer should be this year’s Cy Young Award winner. If you need further proof, Bauer leads the National League in ERA (1.72), complete games (2), shutouts (2), strikeouts (100) and WHIP (.790). Bauer is third in innings pitched (73.0) behind just German Marquez and Kyle Hendricks.

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The only two players who can even claim to be in the conversation with Bauer are Yu Darvish of the Chicago Cubs and Jacob deGrom of the New York Mets. Bauer has a better ERA, has pitched more innings, allowed fewer hits and has more punch outs than both Darvish and deGrom. Give Trevor Bauer dat trophy.