video thumbnail

MIL@CIN: Bailey fans eight over eight strong innings

CINCINNATI -- A single run allowed in a well-pitched game isn't usually too high of an obstacle to overcome. But this season for the Reds, it has spelled doom five times.

Over his eight innings on Saturday, Reds pitcher Homer Bailey gave up one run in the top of the first to the Brewers on an RBI single by Aramis Ramirez. Brewers starter Matt Garza went the distance with a two-hitter.

Together, it was enough to make the Reds 1-0 losers for the fifth time this season.

"I've been picked up by our offense so much this year. It kind of came back around this time," said Bailey, who gave up seven hits and four walks with eight strikeouts. "I have a lot of faith in our offense and they've been supporting me all year. Is it frustrating? Of course it is. But that's just the way the game goes sometimes. There's not really a whole lot I can do about it."

Cincinnati's offense, which really seemed to come alive in early-to-mid June, has shown it's still capable of being stifled. The last 1-0 loss was only on Monday in San Diego when the Padres were held to one hit and won the game.

Here are some other items of note from Saturday:

• This was the Reds' 10th shutout defeat in 86 games. In all of 2013, they were blanked 11 times.

• Garza was the first Reds opposing pitcher to work a shutout at Great American Ball Park since Pittsburgh's Charlie Morton won a 5-0 game on May 18, 2011.

• There have only been 19 shutouts during the regular season at GABP, 12 by Reds pitchers and seven by opposing pitchers.

• There have been 95 shutouts pitched and 15 1-0 finals in the 12-year history of GABP -- including 10 shutouts and four 1-0 games this season. That included a 1-0 Reds victory over the Cardinals on April 2, which came two days after a 1-0 loss to St. Louis on Opening Day.

• There have been 76 games without a home run hit in the 12-year, 930-game history of cozy GABP -- including five this season.

On the heels of his three-hit shutout at San Francisco over Tim Hudson on Sunday, Bailey saw all of his hits allowed come with two outs vs. Milwaukee. In the first inning following a Jonathan Lucroy two-out double, Carlos Gomez drew a full-count walk and Ramirez lined a first pitch to right field for an RBI single and a Milwaukee lead.

"Bailey threw the ball well, too. Shoot, he had that one hiccup in the first and then it was just a straight street fight between the two teams today," said Garza, who walked two and struck out nine for his fourth career shutout.

It might have been a bigger deficit for Bailey, but twice on two-out hits, assists by right fielder Jay Bruce netted the third out. Bruce cut down runners trying to score in both the sixth and seventh innings.

In the sixth on a Khris Davis double, Bruce threw to shortstop Zack Cozart, who threw out Ramirez at the plate. The seventh inning ended when Mark Reynolds tried to score on a Scooter Gennett double to right field and was nailed on a perfect relay from Brandon Phillips.

"We were just doing what we can out there [defensively]," Bruce said. "Homer was doing a great job and we were just trying to stay in the game."

Garza had 12 up and 12 down through four innings while throwing only 36 pitches. Phillips lined a leadoff single to right-center field in the fifth for the Reds' first baserunner. Bad luck came next when Bruce scorched a liner caught by Reynolds, who stepped on first base for the double play.

The only consolation for Bruce -- the first Reds batter of the day to take Garza to a three-ball count -- was the ball was hit hard enough to break Reynolds' glove. He had to go to the dugout for a replacement.

Garza did not give up another hit after a one-out double by Cozart in the sixth. He retired 11 of his final 13 batters, including Joey Votto's strikeout to end the game on his 111th pitch. The Reds now trail first-place Milwaukee by seven games in the National League Central as the two teams will meet in the series rubber game on Sunday.

"I think that it's already behind us, pretty much, and we're going to come out tomorrow ready to play," said Bruce, who is mired in a career-long 0-for-23 slump. "But 1-0 losses are very, very frustrating because we have a very capable offensive team and a lot of guys can do a lot of things and a lot of dynamic pieces of our offense. And today we weren't able to really utilize them and get going, so it's tough."

MLB.com Comments