For someone with a $15 million civil lawsuit for alleged sexual assault hanging over his head, Cincinnati Reds‘ starter Alfredo Simon looked sharp. His win on Tuesday night against the Chicago Cubs belied any turmoil that the 32-year-old veteran might have taken with him to the mound in the wake of the rape allegation levied against Simon in a civil suit last week
How Simon would react to his situation and any publicity that ensued was one of the more intriguing aspects of his start against the Cubs. The fact that his performance was as strong as it was may give the Reds confidence that they can slow the return of injured Mat Latos, who Simon has replaced in the rotation.
Simon surrendered just two earned runs to the Cubs over six innings, which matched the most he has surrendered this season. In five straight quality starts as the replacement for Mat Latos, Simon now has four wins and a 1.60 ERA. Simon was matched by Cubs ace Jeff Samardzija through the first five innings of Tuesday’s game before Samardzija was chased in the bottom of the sixth.
Whereas Simon had an off-the-field issue at the forefront of his start against the Cubs, Samardzija had the black cloud of a seemingly perpetual winless streak hovering over his head. Samardzija has not won a game in 12 consecutive starts, dating back to August 24 of last year. Heading into Tuesday night’s game against the Reds, Samardzija had recorded five straight quality starts and a 1.53 ERA despite not winning any games. The quality start streak ended as Samardzija failed to finish the sixth inning Tuesday night, but the winless streak goes on.