By HAL McCOY
CINCINNATI — It is not a good thing when a baseball team makes more errors than it scores runs. That was the modus operandi Wednesday night in Great American Ball Park that led to another in the long pantheon of defeats for the Cincinnati Reds.
They made three errors. They scored one run. They lost to Milwaukee, 3-1, as the Brewers completed a three-game sweep.
And things are getting slightly silly for the 7-and-24 Reds. They are on a five-loss pace ahead of the 1962 New York Mets, the all-time bottom of the keg when he it comes to losing, the all-time worst 120 losses. The Reds are low-stepping their way toward 125 losses.
After 31 games in 1962, the Mets were 12-and-19.
The Brewers came to Cincinnati from Chicago, where they scored an abysmal two runs in four games, all losses to the Chicago Cubs in Wrigley Field. They scored 16 runs in three games against the Reds.
“We ran into a little bit of a buzz saw,” said manager Jim Riggleman. “I think the Cubs irritated them by doing what they did to them before they got here. They came in ready to play and they played really good throughout the series.”
The game was kind of an evaluation for starting pitcher Luis Castillo, who is definitely on The Struggle Train. In his previous outing he survived only one inning against the Minnesota Twins and gave up five runs and six hits.
Was he better? He couldn’t have been worse. On Wednesday he pushed and shoved his way through six innings and gave up two runs, nine hits, walked one and struck out seven.
It was better but not good.
“He is not completely what he is going to be, not by that outing. When Luis is really right, you wouldn’t see nine hits in five innings,” said Riggleman. “He is going to put away hitters a little better than that. He is moving in the right direction.”
On the other side, the Reds ran into left hander Wade Miley, making his Milwaukee debut. He was signed to a minor league contract in mid-February and made the team, but has been on the disabled list until Wednesday.
And he was on his game. He gave up one run, three hits, walked three and struck out four in six innings. He certainly got Riggleman’s attention.
“Miley was really good,” he said. “He prepared himself with some minor-league rehab starts, but he was really good. I’ve seen him a few times and that’s the best I’ve seem him.”
Castillo retired the first four Brewers then gave up a pair of one-out singles to put runners on third and first. he struck out Manny Pina for the second out, but a ball hit by Orlando Arcia bounced off diving first baseman Joey Votto. It was ruled a hit and a run scored to move the Brewers in front, 1-0.
The Reds scored their only run in the fourth against Miley and they needed a pair of walks to egg them on. Eugenio Suarez walked and scored on Devin Mesoraco’s double. Alex Blandino walked to put two runners on with one out. They stayed anchored when both Castillo and Billy Hamilton struck out.
The second run off Castillo came in the fifth when Christian Yelich homered into the right field pavilion. The third run came off Jared Hughes in the eighth on back-to-back singles by Hernan Perez and Jesus Aguilar and a throwing error by Reds shortstop Jose Peraza, only his second error this season.
The Reds had the potential tying run at the plate with one out in the ninth after Alex Blandino beat out an infield chopper in front of the plate. Alas, as it has happened so often in crucial situations, the game ended on Devin Mesoraco’s double play grounder.