This time Hernandez gives it up, Reds lose, 6-5

By Hal McCoy
Contributing Writer

It is amazing how the fortunes of one baseball player can change in less than a day, eight little hours, from the the castle to a shanty.

That was the scenairo Saturday/Sunday for Cincinnati Reds pitcher David Hernandez and it definitely was the shanty for him Sunday afternoon in Oracle Park.

Hernandez gave up two runs in the eighth inninng Sunday, blowing a one-run lead and losing a 6-5 game to the San Francisco Giants.

On Saturday, Hernandez struck out the first four batters and five of the six he faced over two innings to protect a 5-4 victory.

Ironically, it was the same four Giants hitters to come to the plate to start the eighth inninng Sunday, the four guys he struck out.

Not this time.

Evan Longoria singled on the first pitch. Pablo Sandoval doubled. Mac Williamson grounded to short, but the tying run scored. After Hernandez struck out Brandon Crawford for the second out, Kevin Pillar blooped a single to center and Sandoval slid across with the go-ahead and, as it turned out, the winning run.

All that was left was for San Francisco closer Will Smith to retire the Reds 1-2-3 in the ninth for his 10th save.

Reds starter Tyler Mahle, run-starved all season, was given two runs in the first inning on a two-out, two-run single by Jose Iglesias.

Mahle, perhaps shocked by the sudden run support, gave those two runs right back in the bottom of the first on a double by Steven Duggar and an opposite-field home run down the left field line by Pablo Sandoval.

Mahle, who is 0-and-8 over his last 13 starts and winless since last July, steadied himself after Sandoval’s home run and the Reds constructed a 4-2 lead.

Back-to-back two-out doubles by Jose Peraza and Nick Senzel pushed the Reds in front, 3-2, in the second and Yasiel Puig’s leadoff home run in the sixth gave the Mahle a 4-2 margin.

Mahle hadn’t walked a batter until he walked Brandon Crawford leading off the seventh. Brandon Belt, who didn’t start the last two games after pulling a muscle in his leg, pinch-hit with one out and bounced one into McCovey Cover over the right field stands, a two-run game-tying blast.

That was the last pitch Mahle threw and his two mistakes turned into four runs, a pair of two-run homers.

The Reds took a 5-4 lead in the eighth by scoring a run — just one run when they had the bases loaded with no outs. And the run came on a bases-loaded walk to pinch-hitter Tucker Barnhart.

But Kyle Farmer struck out, Curt Casali grounded into a force out at home and Jose Peraza lined hard to shortstop.

Then came Herandez, who wishes on this day he could have stayed in Hernando’s Hideaway.

The loss ended Cincinnati’s three-game winning streak and they finished the west coast trip 3-and-3 against two last place teams, Oakland (1-and-2 including a no-hitter by Mike Fires) and San Francisco (2-and-1).

After their first off day in 20 days Monday, the Reds are at home for six games against two first place teams, the Chicago Cubs for three and the Los Angeles Dodgers for three.

4 thoughts on “This time Hernandez gives it up, Reds lose, 6-5”

  1. Won 3 and lost 11 v. central division teams thusfar.

    Hate to call May series of play critical for the ballclub but I think it is.

    The next several days will go a long way in demonstrating if the ballclub and the coaching staffs computers spell getting out of the division basement.

    Oh well, wont be a problem getting cheap seats and be moved down behind home plate so it looks good for the television camera !

    Wildcard contender ? LOL…

  2. Bell needs to not over use a reliever like he just did with Hernandez. He threw 25 pitches the night before and hadnt used Hughes and had Lorenzen.

    Now with Votto. Look at a YouTube video of Votto batting ag Cueto May 2016. His stance is more fluid more upright and doesnt do that “practice check swing” he does which I have no idea why he is doing that in between pitches. And his swing is mire fluid as well. Please Hal tell Joey ir Turner Ward to look at it and he can see this simple adjustment will get him back to looking more like Votto.

  3. Your right Jim.

    It seems up to Votto’s current, he’s recently demonstrated famous skills for less than a full season of play. Understandable as I can’t do what I used to either.

    Recalling Pete’s commentaries over the years about suddenly “hitting a brick wall”. I’ve always heard that Votto talks to Pete regularly. I suspect that continues. Like and similar to Johnny Bench suggesting to Homer Bailey last year he was “flagging his pitches”. Love to know if the KC pitching coach spotted same and Homer listened.

    One do wonder !

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