Mike Leake started for Cincinnati and turned in a quality start: 6 innings and 3 runs. He also allowed 6 hits, walked 2, and struck out 5. The bullpen was ineffective for a second straight night, though, allowing 2 more runs in the 8th.
The Reds took the lead early, with Zack Cozart leading off the game with his 13th home run. Another run scored when a Ryan Ludwick ground out scored Drew Stubbs. The Reds stopped scoring in the 4th after Todd Frazier hit his 14th home run. But it wasn’t enough to get the win.
Winning streaks gloss over weaknesses of a team. It’s unfortunate that the Reds’ last streak coincided with the non-waiver trading deadline. General Manager Walt Jocketty has already shown his preference of inactivity. That combined with the team playing so well hid the black hole of ineptitude that manager Dusty Baker has available to him every game on his bench. Jocketty has given Baker nothing, and it showed last night, when Wilson Valdez batted in the 9th with a runner on and grounded into a double play to kill any chance of a comeback. That’s not the batter you want in that situation, but the Reds had no one better on the bench.
Joey Votto can’t come back soon enough.
The Reds try to stop the bleeding and maintain their 2 1/2 game lead over the Pittsburgh Pirates this afternoon. Homer Bailey will start against former Red Justin Germano at 2:20pm EDT.