July 31, 1975 Reds 11, Giants 6 (69-37)
A big six run second inning gave the Reds a comfortable lead as starter Clay Kirby coasted to his eighth win of the season. He gave up four runs on seven hits in six innings of work. Clay Carroll threw the final three frames to earn his fourth save of the season.
Don’t look now, but the Reds are winning. Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter much. Riding two straight wins over the Dodgers, the Reds went to San Diego and swept the Padres to extend their winning streak to five. I think this is their longest streak of the season (I’m too lazy to look it up).
Luke Hudson started things off for the Reds on Friday. Five so-so innings of work and he walked away with a win. Adam Dunn continued his tear as he hit two homers and a double. That last homer was his thirtieth of the season and he’s right on pace to hit the same number of homers he did last year (46).
Yesterday was even better. Aaron Harang threw a really nice game to win his seventh game (leads the team, sigh). His ERA is an outlier on the team at 3.81. Austin Kearns drove in two and Valentine drove in three.
Today, the Reds finished things up with another squashing. This time it was Eric Milton. In what was by far his best start of the season, he went seven innings and gave up no runs on four hits. No walks either. He struck out six and he walked away with his fifth win of the season. Bert Blyleven’s record might be safe yet. Adam Dunn hit his thirty first homer and it was a grand slam. Joe Randa went 0 for 11 in the series.
Other then the Randa trade last week, the Reds stood pat at the trading deadline. The Padres now join all of the other teams in the AL West below .500. They’re now tied with the D-Rays for first place, despite being three games below .500. If the Reds played in the NL West, they’d be four games out of first place (tied with the Dodgers).
And the Reds are no longer the second worst team in the National League. They’re now tied for the fourth worst, so we’re moving on up.
Braves are on deck. Another first place team will fall before us. Day off tomorrow, so enjoy it.
July 30, 1975 Reds 6, Giants 1 (68-37)
For the first time in 45 games, a Reds starter completed a game. Pat Darcy was impressive in his nine innings of work as he gave up only a single run on eight hits, while striking out three.
July 29, 1975 Giants 4, Reds 2 (67-37)
The Giants turned the tables on the Reds as they doubled them up despite being outhit. The Reds gave up seven hits, so that definitely helped, and despite outhitting the Giants 10-7, the Giants actually left more men on base.
The Reds jumped out to an early lead on Ken Griffey’s third homer of the season. They put another run on the board in the fourth when Darrel Chaney singled home Merv Rettenmund. The Giants didn’t waste much time after that because in the next half inning, the Giants tagged starter Fred Norman for two runs.
Both teams were then held scoreless until the ninth inning when the Giants scored two runs off of reliever Rawly Eastwick. The Reds went down fairly quietly in the bottom of the ninth to finish the game up.
July 28, 1975 Reds 8, Giants 4 (67-36)
The Reds doubled up on the Giants despite getting out hit 17-10. The Giants left 13 men on base as the Reds pitching staff threw themselves out of several jams.
The Reds jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the first on a big three run homer by Dan Driessen. Pete Rose also had a big game with two doubles, two RBIs and a run. Johnny Bench and Tony Perez both had two hits a piece.
The pitching lines for the Reds didn’t look impressive, but reliever Pedro Borbon walked away with the win. Starter Gary Nolan only threw 2 2/3 innings as he gave up seven hits and two runs. Borbon threw five innings and gave up two runs on eight hits.
At this point in the season, even a win is good news. So a two-two split against the Dodgers this week wouldn’t be great if the Reds were in contention, it’s about as good as it gets for the last place version of the Reds. It’s also good considering the Reds lost the first two games of the series only to bounce back to win the last two.
Monday’s game was pathetic. One hit. One freaking hit. Aaron Harang held the Dodgers to four runs, which these days isn’t that bad.
Tueday’s game, while a loss, was a little more palatable. Eric Milton gave up one, and only one homer and he matched that by hitting a homerun himself. Ken Griffey also went yard, his 22nd of the season. Milton dropped to 4-11 and failed to get his ERA below seven.
Things turned for the Reds yesterday. The Reds came back from being down 4-2 to take the lead only to give it up. Then with the game tied 6-6, Ryan Freel drew a walk, stole his fourth and fifth bases of the game, and then scored the go ahead run on a sac. fly by Felipe Lopez. Ken Griffey hit his 23rd homer of the season. Do we really want to trade this guy?
This afternoon was even better. Brandon Claussen threw a gem (seven innings, one run, four hits) and Jason LaRue hit his eighth and ninth homers of the season. He drove in five of the Reds six runs.
We’re still in last though. The Padres are on deck, and their home stadium is the antithesis of the Great American Ballpark. We’ll pass those pesky Pirates yet.
Trading deadline is coming up. I’ve heard everyone being shopped from Adam Dunn to Ken Griffey so it should be interesting. I wonder if we’ll be buyers or sellers???
July 27, 1975 Dodgers 5, Reds 3 (66-36)
A four run fourth inning off of starter Tom Carroll put the Dodgers in front 4-0. The Reds tried to bounce back with two in the bottom of the fourth and a run in the ninth, but they came up short and settled for a split with the Dodgers.
The Reds scored all three of their runs on solo homers. Joe Morgan and Johnny Bench hit back to back homers in the fourth and Tony Perez hit his solo shot in the ninth. Joe Morgan had three hits, and Ken Griffey had two. The homer by Bench was his 20th of the season.
Tom Carroll was hit hard early and left the game with nobody out in the fourth. He gave up four runs on seven hits. The bullpen did a solid job as the relievers combined for six innings of work. They gave up only a single run on seven hits.
July 26, 1975 Reds 5, Dodgers 3 (66-35)
For the third straight game, Pete Rose came up big and was a major factor in the Reds win. He went four for five and had four of the Reds’ eight hits and scored three of the Reds’ five runs.
Johnny Bench had two RBIs and Joe Morgan had two hits. Jack Billingham almost went the distance. He threw 8 2/3 and he gave up three runs on nine hits. He got into a jam in the ninth and had runners on first and second when Sparky went to the pen and brought in Rawly Eastwick, who struck out the final batter to put the game away.
The Reds have won seven of their last ten games. Not too shabby. And for a brief moment, they pulled themselves out of the cellar only to inspire the Pirates to two straight wins. Those two wins pushed us back down to the bottom.
But at least we’re dragging the Brewers down closer to us as we took two of three this weekend. Friday night’s game was plain old butt whoopin and Adam Dunn did the whoopin. The future Hall of Famer belted two homers (putting his season total at 27) and drove in three runs. Joe Randa drove in three runs in what was his final game in a Reds uniform and Felipe Lopez went yard.
Between Friday and Saturday’s game, the Reds traded Joe Randa to the Padres. In return, we get two pretty good young arms. Justin Germano has struggled so far this year but he’s a pretty good prospect. Baseball Prospectus said he had excellent control and a good groundball inducing arsenal. That also picked up Travis Chick, who also seems to be a stingy with the walks.
Germano will turn 23 this in a couple of weeks and Chick is 21. I give the Reds an A for effort on this one.
In Saturday’s game, the Padres turned the tables and scored 11 runs of their own. Brandon Claussen was on the receiving end of the beatdown as he gave up nine earned runs in less then four innings. Ryan Freel filled in for Randa at third and scored twice, and Adam Dunn once again got it done by driving in three. His two for three day kept him right at .250.
The Reds actually got some pitching in Sunday’s game. Luke Hudson had his best start of the season (which really isn’t that tough) and matched Doug Davis by giving up only two runs. Unfortunately for the Brew Crew, they don’t have an apparant future Hall of Famer, because Adam Dunn once again got things done by hitting a solo walk off homer to win the game. Give some credit to the Reds bullpen. They pitched three innings of one hit ball.
Now we go on one of those west coast swings. First up to the plate are the Dodgers. Four games at Chavez Ravine, then we go to San Diego over the weekend.
Brian has the Reds diary caught up again, but this is a pretty boring part of the season. Although if compared to the 2005 version of the Reds, the 1975 version might seem pretty surreal. All they do is win.
July 25, 1975 Dodgers 4, Reds 3 (64-35)
With the Reds improbable run, they had built up a 12 1/2 game lead over the Dodgers. If Los Angeles wanted any chance at making a run, they had to do it in these head to head games.
After the Dodgers jumped out 1-0 in the first then 2-0 in the second, the Reds came back with three unanswered runs to take the lead. Unfortunately for the home team, the Dodgers touched reliever Clay Carroll in the eighth to win the game 4-3.
July 25, 1975 Reds 6, Dodgers 3 (65-35)
The Reds came from behind to top the Dodgers and to salvage a split of the doubleheader. Pete Rose put the Reds in front with a huge three run homer in the seventh. Merv Rettenmund had the only multihit game for the Reds as he went two for three with a run.