Daily Archives: October 8, 2012

October 8, 2012

NLDS Game 2: A good old fashioned butt whipping

Reds (2-0)0103000509130
Giants (0-2)000000000020
W: Arroyo (1-0) L: Bumgarner (0-1)


Bronson Arroyo dominated the Giants thanks to his complete control of his over 9,000 pitches.

After Johnny Cueto went down and Mat Latos saved the bullpen–and the season–from ruin in game 1, Bronson Arroyo started game 2. And I, like many, was happy to have that rested bullpen ready in case Bad-royo showed up.

That concern was not necessary. Arroyo was perfect through 4 2/3, retiring the first 14 batters he faced. He was taken out after the 7th, thanks to a long inning by the Reds’ offense where they batted around. Without that, Arroyo likely would have pitched longer. As it was, in his 7 innings, he allowed no runs, 1 hit, walked 1, and struck out 4. One of the stats delivered on the television broadcast concerned his ability to mix pitch speeds, ranging from 68 to 90. It was an awesome performance, and quintessentially Arroyo.

The offense, such a concern before the playoffs started, has apparently found that switch and flipped it. Yesterday, Ryan Ludwick got things started with a solo home run in the 2nd.

After being held scoreless for an inning, the Reds extended their lead in the 4th. With Joey Votto and Ryan Ludwick on, Scott Rolen hit a single to drive in Votto. The next batter, Ryan Hanigan, continued the small-ball playing, and drove in Ludwick and Rolen with his own single.

The game stayed 4-0 until the 8th, when the Reds turned the game into a blowout. Votto and Chris Heisey both reached with singles. Jay Bruce hit a double to score them both. Then Hanigan came to bat and drove in Bruce. Drew Stubbs continued piling on with a triple that scored Hanigan. And Brandon Phillips drove in the inning’s 5th and final run with a double that easily scored Stubbs.

After that, the Reds held a 9-0 lead. The bullpen took over, with J. J. Hoover and Jose Arredondo completing the shutout of the Giants.

The Reds hold a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series. The two teams head to Cincinnati to play game 3 on Tuesday at 5:30pm. Homer Bailey is scheduled to start against Ryan Vogelsong.

October 8, 2012

Votto 3-for-7 in NLDS

Last Game
The Reds had an authoritative victory over the Giants last night, 9-0. The win gives them Ws in the first 2 games and puts them in a real nice situation as they come home to finish out the series: 3 more chances to get 1 more win, all in the comfort of their own home field.

Bronson Arroyo was the winner, and he definitely earned the title. He allowed just 1 hit and 1 walk in 7.0 innings, all in just 91 pitches. His velocity was all over the place, as was his placement, so the Giants never could figure out what he was going to do next. Dude made it look easy.

Next Game
The Reds are off today to travel home to claim their “home field advantage.” They’re back in action tomorrow at the strange start time of 5:30 p.m. Homer Bailey was already home, though, seeing as he got the call to start game 3 for the Reds. He’ll be facing off against Ryan Vogelsong for the Giants.

Votto puts on a knee brace after an automatic double

Joey Votto exposed some skin to the crowd after his double. Once on base, he always puts on a knee brace.

Votto’s Awesomeness Confounds Commentators
If you’ve been watching the first two games of this series, you know that the commentators simply cannot get over the fact that Joey Votto hasn’t hit a zillion home runs this year. “He’s just not the hitter he was before the surgery,” they say, shaking their heads as if Votto’s turned out to be some tragic disappointment to Cincinnati.

I guess the baseball generalist with a shallow understanding of the team just doesn’t get it. It must seem impossible for a guy who is as central to the organization (and as well-paid) as Votto is can possibly be a humble on-base machine. It probably didn’t help when he went 0-for-3 in game 1. But he went 3-for-4 in game 2, bringing his post-season stats nicely in line.

It’s not as annoying as some things, but it sure would be nice to have someone who has some respect for a .337/.474/.567 line calling the game. Not every valuable player has to hit 40 over the wall every year. Cincy has had plenty of those in the last 17 years, but these have been the first post-season games we’ve won in that amount of time.

What to Say to Sound Smart at the Water Cooler
Johnny Cueto faced just 1 batter in game 1 of this series, which is the fewest batters faced by a starting pitcher in any MLB postseason game ever. Prior to Cueto, the record was held by Curly Odgen, who faced only 2 batters as the starter for Washington in game 7 of the 1924 World Series, also against the Giants–the New York Giants.

The two shortest post-season starts, both against the same organization (albeit in 2 different cities). If you’d like to run with this parallelism, the Senators *did* win the World Series in 1924.