The Reds had the lead before I even turned on the television broadcast. They were completely dominating through the first five innings, and I was ready to decrement the Magic Number.
Then, suddenly, Mike Leake gave up a 2-run homer to Alfonso Soriano in the sixth inning, plus 1 more run, that got the Cubs within 1. Poor J.J. Hoover was left to his own devices after loading up the bases with walks and singles and ended up walked in a run to tie it up in the eighth.
Eventually the extra innings were upon us. The Reds finally managed a run in the top of the eleventh, and I got to decrement the Magic Number after all. Just 3 more to go, guys.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals beat the Astros, making it impossible for the Reds to clinch the division in Chicago. The next home series against the Dodgers is the soonest they can clinch now.Next Game
The Reds finish up the series with the Cubs today at 2:20 p.m. This may be just what Johnny Cueto (RHP, 17-9, 2.92 ERA) needs to get back on track.
Cueto has been the victim of 3 losses in his last 3 starts. That’s pretty surprising from our Opening Day starter ace, but it isn’t surprising when you consider that he’s given up 16 runs in that amount of time.
That being the case, the Reds’ offense had better be ready to touch up his opponent, Jason Berken (RHP, 0-1, 4.50 ERA), for a few as well.
Your Chance to Listen to a Busy Signal for an Hour
John Fay says that the Reds told him that they’re going to have a bank of tickets available for you to try to call in to buy on Friday morning:
A limited number of tickets for potential National League Division Series games at Great American Ball Park will go on sale by phone only at 9:00 a.m. Friday at (513) 381-REDS (7337)…this allotment of tickets is for fans without computers or internet access and for fans not selected in the online ticket opportunity…there is a limit of 4 tickets per phone transaction, while supplies last…no tickets will be available at the Great American Ball Park ticket office.
We’ll have to take his word for it, because I can’t find a single whiff of this information on Reds.com, nor in a press release, nor in any email communication. Of course, given that they’re specifically targeting people “without computers or internet access,” maybe that part makes sense.
What to Say to Sound Smart at the Water Cooler
Todd Frazier is the Reds’ nominee for the 2012 Roberto Clemente Award, which is given in honor of a player’s contribution to the community above-and-beyond his contribution at the plate. Among other things, Frazier saved a man’s life this year by administering the Heimlich Maneuver. You can cast your vote for Frazier by on MLB.com.