By HAL McCOY
For the Cincinnati Reds, it was Against All Odds Tuesday night against the Texas Rangers.
And they beat those odds handily, whipping the Rangers, 8-2.
The Rangers, owning a solid grip on first place in the American League West, had won seven straight games and 24 of their last 30.
THEY HAD WON 10 straight series and 11 straight series in their home Globe Life Park.
And they were facing pitcher Colby Lewis, who came into the game with a 6-and-0 record and had won 14 straight decisions. In addition, in his previous start Lewis took a perfect game into the eighth inning and a no-hitter into the ninth inning against the Oakland A’s.
The Reds, to say the least, were not impressed on this steamy night in Arlington, Tex.
AND THE RANGERS HAD the Reds right where they wanted them when Jay Bruce hit a three-run home run in the top of the first to give the Reds a 3-0 lead.
The Rangers have come from behind to win games 23 times this season, best in the majors, while the Reds have lost 24 times after leading in a game, worst in the majors.
Not this time, even though rookie Jurickson Profar hit a second-inning two-run home run to cut the Reds’ lead to 3-2.
The Reds, though, added three more against Lewis in the fifth. Then, Against More Odds, they scored two runs after Lewis left against the Rangers’ bullpen, which had gone 21 2/3 innings without giving up a run.
WHILE ALL THE ATTENTION was focused on the 34-year-old Lewis, Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani did the pitching for the night. While Lewis nearly pitched a perfect game in his previous start, DeSclafani lasted only 2 2/3 innings and gave up four runs (three uneared).
On this night, though, after giving up the two-run home run in the second, he pitched five scoreless innings and left after seven — two runs, five hits, one walk, six strikeouts, 106 pitches (66 strikes).
In addition to his three-run home run in the first, his 17th homer, had two more hits and drove in four with the stands filled with scouts scribbling notes in preparation for a trade.
Zack Cozart, struggling of late, shaved his beard and it worked — two hits that included a home run and a two-run triple for three RBI.
THE REDS COLLECTED 11 hits with first baseman Joey Votto in sick bay and out of the lineup. Adam Duvall made his first start of the year at first base and Jose Peraza made his professional debut in left field.
Raisel Iglesias came off the disabled list and was placed in the bullpen while relief pitcher Blake Wood is taking a paternity leave.
Iglesias replaced DeSclafani in the eighth and quickly gave up a single and a walk. But he was bailed out when center fielder Billy Hamilton caught a fly ball and threw home to wipe out Mitch Moreland trying to score after the catch on a fabulous catch-and-dive tag by catcher Tucker Barnhart. Then Iglesias closed it off with a 1-2-3 ninth.