The Cincinnati Reds won yet another series last night, defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks 11-7. Like so many wins before, the Reds took the lead in their last at-bat by scoring 4 runs in the 9th. The impressive part is that they also scored 4 runs in the 8th just to tie the game.
Edinson Volquez started and continued his pitch-inefficient ways, throwing 100 pitches through 4 2/3 innings. He was good for the first 4, but collapsed in the 5th, allowing 5 runs, 2 from a home run by Chris Young. The bullpen came in, but for the first time in what feels like forever, they weren’t perfect. Jordan Smith had a rare bad outing, allowing another 2 run home run to Adam LaRoche.
This put the Reds down 7-3, the early lead from Drew Stubbs’ sacrifice fly in the first long forgotten, as were the solo shots by Jim Edmonds and Jay Bruce. No, more runs were needed, and in the 8th, the Reds got to work. Miguel Cairo got a pinch-hit single to start things. Bruce tripled him in, and then Ramon Hernandez hit a double to score Bruce, making it 7-5. Paul Janish singled to set up first and third for Laynce Nix. Nix hit a very shallow flyball to right field that would have been impossible for even Drew Stubbs to score on, but the right-fielder’s throw was so far out of the catcher’s reach that Hernandez took off and scored. Brandon Phillips came up next and hit a double that tied the game.
It was late as I watched this last night, and I was so happy to have my sleep-deprivation rewarded. In the 9th, it got even better. Edmonds led the inning off with a double and advanced to third on a ground-out by Scott Rolen. Chris Heisey was brought on to pinch-hit, and he laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to score the go-ahead run. It was so perfect, that Heisey made it first safely. Such an exciting play.
Before the inning was over, Paul Janish drove in a run, and Laynce Nix doubled in a couple more, to make it 11-7.
It’s so fun to see the Reds never lose hope, to never lose that fighting spirit. It’s why I stayed up after they were down by 4 late in the game. Because I knew that the Reds probably would come back and get that 3-game lead over the Cardinals.