April 5, 2010

Cardinals 11, Reds 6: Optimism Crushed by Reality

Cardinals (1-0)10021020511122
Reds (0-1)0002001126111
W: Carpenter (1-0) L: Harang (0-1)


Well, that sucked.

I always find that opening day for the Cincinnati Reds is a disappointment. This year was no exception.

Aaron Harang started and did about as good as he ever has done in his previous opening day starts. Harang went 5 innings and allowed 4 runs, 3 earned. He struck out 2, unfortunately, it was only the first 2 batters of the game. Things went downhill after that, as Harang allowed home runs to Albert Pujols and Colby Rasmus.

The Reds did score a bit during a Harang start. And really, if they can’t win when they score 6 runs most of the time this year, the pitching isn’t as good as it’s been made out to be. Joey Votto homered to get the Reds on the board, and Scott Rolen homered in the same inning to keep things close.

And things were within reach–albeit a long reach–until Nick Masset allowed a grand slam to Yadier Molina in the top of the 9th. That truly ended things.

Pujols again showed that you have to pitch carefully to him. Fastballs down the middle of the plate aren’t the best approach to him. He was 4 for 5 with 2 home runs and 3 RBI. The heart of the Cardinals lineup was clicking in a way that made me wonder how far away the Reds really are from competing.

Oh well, there’s always tomorrow. And one thing that’s definitely true at this point is it’s still early.

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