It’s September but tonight’s game felt like October no doubt, the Reds and Pirates played a game on Friday that had heart pacing moments and huge turning points that felt like playoff baseball.
In a stunner, the Reds were down to their final out before they scored four unanswered runs in the ninth and 10th inning for a 6-5 unbelievable win. The game winner came on Joey Votto‘s solo home run his 24th of the season with one out in the top of the 10th to left field that just cleared the fences. JJ Hoover pitched the bottom ninth and got the win and Aroldis Chapman went 1-2-3 in the heart of the order in the Pirates lineup for his 38th save of the season
The Reds moved into a tie with Pittsburgh for second place in the National League Central and the first NL Wild Card spot.
Pirates starter Francisco Liriano dominated the Reds for eight innings and 94 pitches, but the Reds finally got it together against closer Mark Melancon in the ninth.
Ryan Ludwick hit a one out single to right field. With two outs, Todd Frazier grounded to shortstop, but the would be final out was lost when Jordy Mercer flipped a horrible throw into the seats behind first base for a two base error that scored Ludwick to cut the deficit to 5-3.
Zack Cozart up, who hit the first pitch for a single that put the tying run on first base and Frazier at third base. Reds sent Billy Hamilton obviously to pinch run and steal, and made the turning point in the game. As Devin Mesoraco batted with two outs, Hamilton stole second base, making him 10-for-10 in stolen bases this season unreal.
Mesoraco fell into a 2-2 count to Melancon before battling to foul off four straight pitches. Finally, on the ninth pitch, Mesoraco bounced a ball off of diving third baseman Pedro Alvarez‘s glove, and both Frazier and Hamilton scored home to tie the game and stunning the sellout PNC Park Pittsburgh.
In a pitching match up of aces from both teams this season, Reds starter Mat Latos was outpitched by Liriano tonight . But the Reds scored first in the top of the first on a two out RBI single by Ludwick, to give the Reds a brief 1-0 lead.
Latos, who had allowed only one home run over his previous 10 starts, gave up back to back homers to the first two Pirates batters. Jose Tabata hit a leadoff homer to left field.It only got louder at PNC after the very next pitch, when Neil Walker took Latos deep for a home run to make it 2-1 Pittsburgh.
Latos allowed two more run in the fourth inning as four straight batters reached with one out. Russell Martin‘s RBI single scored Marlon Byrd, and Mercer’s soft infield hit to third base scored Alvarez to make it 4-1.
In the fifth inning, Frazier lead off homer to center field off of Liriano cut the Reds deficit to 4-2. Reliever Logan Ondrusek gave up a run in the seventh.
Tensions flared up in the eighth, when Reds reliever Sam LeCure hit Andrew McCutchen in the left shoulder obviously not intentional but the Pirates thought other wise, both benched were warned. Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was ejected during an argument. Big win for the Reds definitely have the momentum right now and will look to carry it into these next two games. Tomorrow night pitching match up will be Homer Bailey and AJ Burnett. First pitch is at 7:05pm.