Yesterday, the Phillies (25-35) shut out the Reds (28-32) back by a strong performance from the offense, starter Cole Hamels, and the bullpen. Today looking to take the series against the Reds, the Phillies sent Roberto Hernandez (2-4 4.35 ERA) to the hill. This season Hernandez has fail to seven innings in all but one of his starts. That trend continued this afternoon, only going four innings. The Reds countered Hernandez with Alfredo Simons (8-3 3.15 ERA). Simons this season has been very good for the Reds and leads their team in wins this season.
The Game: The Reds struck first in bottom of the first inning. Speedster Billy Hamilton worked a walk off Hernandez to lead off the inning. Hamilton stole second and moved to third on a ground out by Skip Schumaker. After Brandon Phillips was hit by a pitch, Jay Bruce hit a sac fly for the Reds to get on the board. 1-0 Reds
The Phillies struck back in the second. Ryan Howard led off with a single. Marlon Byrd followed a line drive two-run home run to give the Phillies the lead. The lead wouldn’t last long. Todd Frazier led off the Reds half of the inning with a solo blast to tie the game. 2-2 Tie
In the fourth, the Reds took the lead. Todd Frazier singled and stole second. Zack Cozart then doubled him in. Ramon Santiago followed with a single and Alfredo Simon bunted him over to put runners on second and third. Billy Hamilton would then hit a sac fly to add to the Reds lead. 4-2 Reds
The Reds weren’t going to stop there. In the fifth, Brandon Phillips worked a lead off walk. Jay Bruce drove him in with a two-run blast. In the sixth, Carlos Ruiz struck back with a solo shot for his second homer of the year to cut into the Reds lead. Then with one out, Ryan Howard singled only to be erased by a Marlon Byrd grounding into a force at second. Domonic Brown then hit a double and the Phillies sent Byrd to score for him to be throw out at the plate. The umpires reviewed the play because catcher Devin Mesoraco blocked the plate, which is now against the rules. The call didn’t go the Phillies way even though it still appeared to be the wrong call. Ryno Sandberg went out to get an explanation and was throw out of the game. 6 -3 Reds
In the seventh, Cesar Hernandez hit a bunt infield single to lead off the inning and moved to second on a ground ball by Revere. Then with two outs, Rollins crushed a ball for a two-run shot to put the Phillies with in one. Carlos Ruiz then worked a walk. Chase Ultey followed Ruiz with a double only two have Ruiz throw out at the plate. The ball went up the line and catcher Devin Mesoraco just tagged Ruiz as he stole around run from the Phillies 6-5 Reds
That would do it for the Phillies as couldn’t complete a come back leading to the Reds tying the series at a game a piece 6-5 Reds Final
Significant Offensive Stats:
Jimmy Rollins: 1-5 HR 2 RBI
Ryan Howard: 2-4 R
Marlon Byrd: 1-4 HR 2 RBI
Domonic Brown: 3-4
Cesar Hernandez: 2-4 R
Impact: The Phillies lost a heart breaker. With two calls at the plate deciding the game. If those calls went the Phillies way we would be talking about a Phillies victory. That’s what happens then your not having a good year, just don’t go your way. Baseball is a game of inches and today those inches were in the Reds favor.
Up Next: Tomorrow the Phillies close out their series versus the Reds as they look to take the series in the rubber match (1:10 pm CSN). Rookie David Buchanan (1-2 6.11 ERA) will start for the Phillies. Buchanan took the loss in his last starts including giving up seven runs to the Nationals in his last start. He will be opposed by Homer Bailey (6-3 4.99 ERA). Bailey isn’t having the greatest years but his offense is keeping him in games leading to his six wins.
Andrew Shipotofsky is a writer for Philliedelphia. Follow him of Twitter @Ashipotofsky