Wacha Shuts Down Reds, Cafecíto And Yadi Carry Offense To 4-2 Win
The Cardinals would get their first look at a Bryan Price-less Reds team tonight, and not much changed, as the Redbirds would come out on top 4-2.
Michael Wacha had his best start of the season tonight, tossing 6.2 innings of one run ball. After starting the game off allowing a leadoff walk to Jesse Winker, Michael Wacha would snag his first of two double plays he would turn in on the evening. Wacha would run a pitch in on the hands of Reds shortstop, Jose Peraza, forcing him to groundout 4-6-3 for two quick outs. Wacha ended the first getting Joey Votto (0-3) to groundout to second baseman, Matt Carpenter.
The Cardinals scored three runs their first go at it, allowing breathing room for Wacha. Tommy Pham, who found himself in the leadoff spot for the second time this year, started the game off with a single. Cafecíto Martínez (3-5) would get his first of three hits, moving up two spots in the order, batting third. “Swags” Ozuna showed excellent plate discipline during his first plate appearance, drawing a walk to load the bases for Yadier Molina. Molina, came through clutch, like always. On a 1-0 pitch, Molina would take a Finnegan fastball deep to RCF, bouncing over the wall for a 2-RBI ground rule double. Gyorko added a run if insurance, hitting a sac-fly to LF, scoring Ozuna.
After a quick inning of work from Wacha, the Cardinals would push across another run, taking an early 4-0 lead. Tommy Pham (1-3, 2 BB) would work his first of two free passes and Carpenter would move him into scoring position grounding out to Votto. Cafecíto would bring Pham in on an RBI-double to LF, for his team leading 16th RBI of the season.
The Reds would get that run back in the top of the 3rd. With one out, nine-hole hitter, Billy Hamilton would hit a single the opposite way to LF. Winker then ripped a single to RF, his second of the game, bringing in Jose Peraza. Peraza would hit into a crazy double-play on a sac-fly to LF, Swags Ozuna. Ozuna would hurry his throw into cutoff man, Gyorko, who relayed the throw to second baseman, Matt Carpenter, who applied the tag on Winker. A huge inning ending double play for Wacha.
Wacha would settle in after that. After giving up a leadoff walk to Votto to start the 4th, he would retire 11 Reds in a row.
The offense would go cold against the Reds bullpen, getting shutout over the last five innings, striking out five times.
Wacha’s night would come to an end with two outs in the 7th inning. Giving up back-to-back singles to Barnhart and Blandino, Matheny would go to his only lefty, Tyler Lyons. Wacha’s final line: (6.2 IP, 6 hits, 1 earned, 1 BB, 3 K’s)
Before Lyons was brought into the game, Scott Schebler was announced as the upcoming pinch-hitter, Riggleman countered Matheny’s move, going to a right-handed batting Devin Mesoraco. Lyons got the out, forcing Mesoraco to groundout 4-6.
With Jordan Hicks warm in the pen, Lyons would go back out for the 8th inning. Lyons had the breaking ball working, getting back-to-back strikeouts on the first two batters (Hamilton & Winker) he faced. Peraza followed, doubling to RF, bringing in the Reds biggest threat, Joey Votto. Lyons won the battle, inducing a ground ball to second base.
The Cardinals would threaten to add onto their 4-1 lead in the 8th inning, stranding two runners (Garcia & Pham) on base. Garcia, who pinch-hit for Lyons, and Pham would both reach base via the walk.
Bud Norris was asked to record the final three outs of the game, for his fifth save in a Cardinals uniform. Norris made it interesting, allowing a leadoff walk to Scooter Gennett and a single to Duvall. Norris buckled down, getting the biggest two outs of the game, on one pitch. A double play, 4-6-3, to bring up Blandino. Blandino would keep the game alive, drilling an RBI-single to LF, making it 4-2 Cardinals. Bud Norris would end the game the next batter he faced, newly entered, Cliff Pennington. Pennington lined a ball to DeJong, as Norris earned his 5th save of the season.
Carlos Martínez (2-1, 1.75) will once again, prove he’s an ace today. Tsunami will have the task of facing off against Homer Bailey. (0-3, 3.42)