Reed - who faced the Cards in his last start on August 3 - was 0-6 coming into tonight's contest, with the Reds having lost each of the 8 games he appeared in. Wacha, his opponent that night, evened his win-loss record to 7-7 with the win - a 5-4 Cardinal victory.
The lineups were as follows:
It was, needless to say, stunning.
The Cardinals rallied from a 4-0 deficit to score five runs in the 9th and take a previously unlikely 5-4 win, thanks to a 9th inning that was ruled by singles, walks, and hit-by-pitches.
With Tony Cingrani on the mound, Yadier Molina began the inning with a single. With consecutive flyouts by Jedd Gyorko and Jhonny Peralta, the game seemed to be a sure loss, but surprises were on their way.
Molina advanced to second on fielder's indifference. Tommy Pham was walked. Kolten Wong, pinch-hitting for Seth Maness, was hit by a pitch. Matt Carpenter hit a single, scoring Molina and Pham. Stephen Piscotty also singled, scoring Wong. Matt Holliday walked.
A lot happened in a short time, but somehow, they weren't done yet.
Ross Ohlendorf entered the game, with Brandon Moss batting. Moss was down 1-2 before working his way for a walk, allowing Jeremy Hazelbaker - pinch-running for Carpenter - to cross the plate.
And then the man who started the inning, Yadier Molina, was hit by a pitch on the hip - an inside fastball.
Somehow, they defied the narratives. Reed pitched a dominant six innings. Blake Wood erased a scoring opportunity in the 7th and shut down St. Louis in the 8th.
All of that hard work was undone in an instant, by a usually-reliable Cingrani and shaky Ohlendorf.
Oh what a night, indeed.
The Reds tried to strike early off of Wacha, as Billy Hamilton led off the top of the 1st with a single, then stole his way to 2nd and 3rd. Wacha allowed two-out walks to Adam Duvall and Brandon Phillips, before inducing Scott Schebler to ground out, ending the bases-loaded jam.
The Cardinals made Reed throw 24 pitches in the bottom half of the 1st, notching only one hit.
In the top of the 2nd, Wacha would find himself in a jam again, but there would be no getting out of it this time. A two-out, two-run double by Zach Cozart put the Reds on top, 2-0. Joey Votto - who went 4-for-11 in the prior series against the Redbirds - capped a 10-pitch at-bat by adding on with a triple, pushing the Reds lead to 3-0. Duvall nearly hit a two-run homer in the left-field corner to further the lead, but the ball was ruled foul by the umpires and confirmed later through review via an umpire challenge.
The Cardinals responded with a 9-pitch bottom half, seeming to set the tone. An insurance run by the Reds in the 3rd seemed to set the tone (until later, of course.)
Wacha was lifted after 5 innings, his linescore being this --> 6 H, 4 R (all earned), 4 BB, 3 K.
Matt Bowman came into the game in the top of the 6th, and would throw in the aforemented frame as well as the 7th. In those two innings, Bowman allowed just one hit while walking two on 27 pitches. Zach Duke pitched the 8th and allowed just one hit, while Seth Maness threw a one-two-three 9th.
During the game, Jim Hayes mentioned that, through an interview with Stephen Piscotty, the team doesn't feel like they're out of it yet. Yes, they've been bummed about their play lately, but they are still positive.
(Could tonight's win finally start something? Can tonight be a spark?)
Tomorrow evening matches up Cincinnati lefty Brandon Finnegan against former Red Mike Leake. First pitch is set at 8:15 Eastern / 7:15 Central.