April 3, 2008

Reds Game 2: Diamondbacks 5, Reds 6



The Reds (1-1) beat the Diamondbacks (1-1) in the game with the most thrilling ending last night (and the only one with a Red Hot Mama game thread). Edwin Encarnacion hit a walkoff home run in the 9th with the Reds down by 2 and 2 aboard.

The game gave Dusty Baker his first victory as a Reds manager. Unfortunately, I’m not too optimistic that there’ll be many more of those, especially since Baker had Edwin BUNTING with no outs.

The best part might have been Jeff Brantly on the telecast ranting against Encarnacion, saying he wasn’t clutch and since he couldn’t bunt, he should have been pinch-hit for. He was interrupted by Encarnacion’s STFU.

The deciding game of the series plays this afternoon, weather willing. Johnny Cueto goes for the Reds, with Doug Davis going for the Diamondbacks.

2 comments to “Reds Game 2: Diamondbacks 5, Reds 6”

  1. Joel says:

    I was at the game last night, so I missed Brantley’s call, but I didn’t mind. I’m not sure what makes him think Edwin is not clutch since he pretty much has always hit better in his career with men on base, especially with RISP. I’m not saying he’s David Ortiz, but at the very least he’s a solid player in so-called clutch situations.

    As for the bunting, that was ridiculous. I see what Dusty thinks he was doing by trying to make it easier on a struggling player, but I think it’s completely wrong. Edwin in his career has zero sacrifice hits. As far as I can find, he has only attempted a bunt in two other at bats in his career. Oddly enough, one of them was last April in the 11th inning of a game against the Dbacks with Griffey and Dunn on 1st and 2nd. Unfortunately he popped out to the catcher in that AB, probably because he’s not clutch.

    The point of my digression there is that EdE is not an experienced bunter, and Dusty thought he was helping him by asking him to do something he’s not used to doing. I know there are many that believe that every player should know how to bunt, but it’s just not the case. Managers are supposed to put their players in the best position they can to succeed, and asking EdE to do something like bunt in that situation is silly. You have to let a player’s talent do the work. That means they will fail sometimes (60% of the time even good hitters fail), but over-managing in that situation just makes the likelihood of failure even greater.

    Thankfully it didn’t matter, but I couldn’t have screamed “TAKE OFF THE DAMN BUNT” any louder last night. My throat is still sore this morning.

  2. Red Hot Mama says:

    You’re right: Dusty was setting him up to fail. Luckily, he failed at making him fail, so the team won.

    We should keep a running tally of questionable management moves from Baker. Other than leading off with Corey Patterson, I mean.