The Cincinnati Reds kept the roll going Monday evening as they defeated the hapless Houston Astros, 8-3. It wasn’t pretty. It wasn’t powerful, but it was a win. The win for the Reds moved them to a game and a half in front of equally hot Pittsburgh Pirates and, better still, a season high 16 games over .500. It was their 5th win in a row and 12th out of the last 14. The Cincinnati Reds now stand at 56 and 40.
For the second game in a row, the Cincinnati Reds used small ball to win a game. This is the third game since the All-Star break that the Reds have won without hitting a home run. Very good sign.
It wasn’t like the Reds didn’t hit. They certainly did that. They equaled a season high of 17 hits and actually left 15 runners on base. However, they were effective enough to push across the 8 runs.
Mat Latos picked up another win to improve to 8-3 for the season. He struggled much of the time and left the game after the 5th inning having tweaked an ankle or knee delivering a pitch during that inning. Latos was able to work out of three different innings of bases loaded situations to allow only 2 runs in his 5 innings of work. Four relievers took care of the rest of the game by allowing only 1 run on 3 hits in 4 innings of work.
At the plate, the Cinncinnati Reds were led by Ryan Ludwick, Brandon Phillips (who improved his BA to .296) and Todd Frazier who went 3 for 6. Ludwick and Frazier knocked in 2 RBI a piece. Chris Heisey (who got the start in left field) got in on the hit parade by going 2 for 4 with 1 RBI.
The two teams will go at it again Tuesday evening as the Cincinnati Reds will send Mike Leake to the mound to try and extend the win streak to 7 games.