Friday, July 2, 2010

Another Turning Point

The Fighting Reds showed just how resilient they are. On June 29, the Cincinnati Reds lost a heartbreaking game to the National League champs to the Philadelphia Phillies. Joey Votto had just slammed a three run homer in the eighth to tie the score. But the Phillies scored three runs off Arthur Rhodes to win it in extra innings. Rhodes had gone 33 games without giving up a run. You know it had to end somewhere. But then came June 30, 2010.

The Reds faced Phillies ace Roy Halladay one day after that disappointing loss. Halladay, earlier this season, pitched a perfect game. I was at this Reds day game. It looked bleak to me. Halladay was Halladay. He was getting outs and keeping the Reds off the scoreboard. Meanwhile, Aaron Harang made a mistake pitch to former Reds top prospect Dane Sardinha. The result? A three run homer to give the Phillies a 3-0 lead. Then the Reds started the comeback in the sixth. They finished it off in the dramatic eighth when rightfielder Jay Bruce blasted a Halladay pitch into the right field bleachers for a two run jack. That gave the Reds a one run lead. When Bruce hit the ball, I was screaming, "Go, baby go. Get out of here baseball!" (The "get out of here baseball" is the late Joe Nuxhall's homerun call for a Reds jack.) I directed my enthusiasm to the Phillies fans who were in front of us. Okay, they were nice, but I was surrounded by them.

Yes, the Phillies were down Placido Polanco and Chase Utley. That's still a great team, with Howard, Victorino, Werth, etc. Geez. And the Reds took two of three. They could have swept them. That's why this is another turning point. The Reds can beat good teams. I predicted if the Reds do what they are capable of doing, they'll win it all. Here's the story for the Phillies' game with video. And just yesterday, the Reds beat the Chicago Cubs 3-2. Here's that story.

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