Reds hope history repeats against Giants
The Cincinnati Reds hope a second series against the Giants already this month will once again awaken their bats when the clubs kick off a three-game series Friday night, this time in San Francisco.
The Reds are coming off a three-game series across the San Francisco Bay in Oakland in which they were no-hit in the opener and shut out over the final 11 innings of a 13-inning loss before finally scraping together just enough offense to win the finale 3-0 behind the pitching of Tanner Roark.
The run-up to the San Francisco series is similar to when the Reds scored one run over the final 19 innings of a four-game set against the New York Mets last week. Cincinnati then bombarded Giants pitching for 15 home runs and 37 runs while splitting a four-game home set.
Two of the big bombers in the series against the Giants -- Derek Dietrich and Eugenio Suarez -- heated up in the Oakland finale, Dietrich hitting a two-run home run in the first inning and Suarez collecting two doubles and a homer.
The homer was Dietrich's fifth in his last six games; Suarez's was his fourth in the last six games.
Both hit homers last Saturday off Dereck Rodriguez when the Reds won the second game of the series 9-2.
Rodriguez gets a rematch Friday, hoping to erase the memories of getting bombed for eight runs and eight hits, including four homers, in five innings.
Rodriguez (3-4, 5.75) sports a fine 3.22 ERA in 16 home appearances, 15 as starter for the Giants. His outing in Cincinnati was the first of his career against the Reds.
One thing will surely be different about the rematch for Rodriguez. His catcher won't be Buster Posey, who will miss the series while he spends a stint on the seven-day concussion list.
The injury occurred when he took a foul tip in the mask Sunday against the Reds.
"When you're young, with the brain you've got to be cautious," Posey told reporters of his decision to take time off for concussion-related purposes for the second time in three years. "I value who I am and will be as a husband and father first and foremost. At the same time, I enjoy doing my job and plan on doing my job."
The Reds will counter with right-hander Luis Castillo (3-1, 1.97), who pitched one of the two Reds losses in the San Francisco series last week.
He took a 4-0 lead into the sixth inning on Sunday before allowing the Giants to rally into a tie, with Posey doing most of the damage with a three-run homer.
Castillo did not get a decision in the game. He has a 1-0 record and 3.29 ERA in two career starts against the Giants.
Both pitchers figure to benefit from two of the top defensive shortstops in the game -- the Reds' Jose Iglesias and the Giants' Brandon Crawford.
Cincinnati pitcher Sonny Gray, who is quite familiar with Crawford being that they were baseball neighbors when the pitcher began his career with the A's, cast his vote for the best earlier this week.
"He is a special player, especially defensively," Gray told reporters of Iglesias during the Reds' visit to Oakland. "He's a really, really fun guy to watch. He's the best I've ever seen."
--Field Level Media
Updated May 10, 2019