Jun 29, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey (34) throws a pitch against the San Francisco Giants during the second inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati Reds Complete Sweep of San Francisco Giants with 4-0 Pounding

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The Cincinnati Reds spent much of the first half of 2014 lumbering along with a mediocre record and providing little in the way of excitement on a game-to-game basis.  As they enter the second half, though, the Reds have shown a recent propensity for dramatic scoring bursts, and on Sunday, they used their latest outbreak to down the San Francisco Giants 4-0, completing a four-game sweep in the Bay.

As has become the norm, both teams lulled fans to sleep through eight innings of one-run ball, that single tally belonging to Cincinnati in the third.  In the top of the ninth, though, the Reds unleashed a flurry of small-ball tactics:  single, balk, hit-by-pitch, sacrifice, infield singles.    It was exciting and, more importantly, it gave Homer Bailey another three runs to work with and kept the starter on the mound to wrap up a complete game.

Bailey went one better by tossing a three-hit, one-walk shutout that also afforded closer Aroldis Chapman some much needed rest.   With the St. Louis Cardinals losing to the Los Angeles Dodgers, the series sweep left the Reds in a dead-heat with the Cards as Cincy heads into their second-half schedule.    Next up for the Reds is a three-game set at San Diego, which means the suddenly revived offense will face a steep challenge in keeping the motor running.

 

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