CINCINNATI – It started like a promising day, when Cincinnati Reds ace Johnny Cueto‘s shutout pumped up the Reds and Great American Ball Park during Game 1 of the doubleheader on Thursday afternoon, the club’s Game 2 performance was not surprising, because the offense sucks and we had Jeff Francis pitching, no disrespect to him.
A 6-1 loss to the Padres in tonight’s cap of a doubleheader was far from the desired followup for the Reds. It meant they dropped two of three games in the series to the lowly San Diego Padres and missed out on a winning homestand, settling for a 3-3 record, it looked promising after taking two of three from the Colorado Rockies last weekend.
Called up for the spot start from Triple-A Louisville, veteran Jeff Francis pitched an okay game through five innings, giving up three runs and five hits with no walks and four strikeouts, he’s not the reason for the loss, it’s that anemic offense.
Meanwhile, Cincinnati’s hitters didn’t do much against Padres starter Tyson Ross, who allowed only one run and three hits, but had control issues, he walked five, over seven innings. Joey Votto looked so bad at the plate aganist Ross, struck out three times in four plate appearances with his first two K’s coming on a combined six pitches from Ross.
The Reds were held hitless over the first four innings by Ross, but they still managed to take a 1-0 first-inning lead. Billy Hamilton manufactured the run with a leadoff walk and stole second base and third base on consecutive pitches with Chris Heisey batting. Hamilton scored on Brandon Phillips‘ groundout to the shortstop.
Francis retired his first five batters but a two-out single in the second by Cameron Maybin preceded Rene Rivera‘s two-run homer to left field. A two-out single by Chase Headley in the third inning scored Chris Denorfia for a 3-1 Padres lead. After that, Francis retired seven of his last eight batters and was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the fifth.
The bullpen sucked, didn’t do the job in keeping the game close. Logan Ondrusek walked three batters in the sixth, including with two outs to Rivera that loaded the bases. Sean Marshall entered and his first batter, Yonder Alonso, hit an RBI single to left field.
Marshall returned for the seventh and surrendered Everth Cabrera‘s first homer of the season, a solo shot to left field on a 2-1 pitch. It became a five-run game when another two-out run was cashed on Alonso’s solo homer to right field in the eighth off Sam LeCure.
Team will start a six game road stand, beginning tomorrow night in Philadelphia against the Phillies. First pitch is at 7:05pm.