May 31, 1976 at the Astrodome
Reds 4, Astros 2 (28-17)
The Reds ended the month of May on a winning note as George Foster’s two run shot in the fifth gave the Reds the lead for good. Joe Morgan doubled, tripled, scored a run and had one RBI and Pete Rose had two hits and a run.
Pat Darcy moved his record up to 2-3 on the season. He gave up two runs on six hits and four walks in five innings of work. Rawly Eastwick held the Astros hitless in the final two frames and he earned his sixth save of the season.
May 30, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Dodgers 6, Reds 5 (26-17)
The Reds dropped the front end of their Sunday doubleheader with the Dodgers in a close game. The Reds jumped out to a 5-3 after four innings, but the Dodgers picked away at the lead and scored the go ahead run off of Rawly Eastwick in the top of the ninth inning.
Gary Nolan was hit hard and didn’t even make it through the fifth inning. He gave up four runs on seven hits with four walks. Eastwick dropped to 3-3 on the season and he already matched last year’s number of losses.
The Reds ran all over catcher Joe Ferguson. In total, the Reds stole nine bases, including four by Ken Griffey and two by Johnny Bench. Dave Concepcion went three for four with two runs and Eddie Armbrister went three for four with a run and stolen base.
May 30, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Reds 7, Dodgers 2 (27-17)
Santo Alcala continued his hot streak as he improved to a perfect 5-0. The rookie gave up two runs (one earned) on five hits with three walks and two strikeouts. Will McEnaney held the Dodgers scoreless in the final three frames to earn his first save of the season.
May 29, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Reds 6, Dodgers 5 (26-16)
The Reds topped the Dodgers with a huge late inning rally. The Reds actually got on the board in the first inning to take an early lead. Pete Rose flew out to lead off the inning then Ken Griffey walked and stole second. Joe Morgan then doubled him Griffey home and later scored on George Foster’s triple.
Jack Billingham ran into some problems in the second inning and gave up three runs and the lead. He gave up another run in both the third and fourth innings and the Dodgers looked like they were going to cruise to an easy lead. In the meantime, Dodger starter Rick Rhoden was handling the Reds pretty easily after running into those problems in the first inning.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Reds finally showed some life. Tony Perez hit a solo homerun to make it a 5-3 game.
In the bottom of the ninth and with Rhoden still on the mound, Dave Concepcion led off with single and Tommy Lasorda gave the ball to Mike Marshall out of the pen. Cesar Geronimo then singled and moved Concepcion to second base, and then Eddie Armbrister bunted both men over to put the tying run at second base. Pete Rose grounded out to Marshall to make it two outs and things were looking grim, but then Ken Griffey came up with a huge clutch triple that drove home both baserunners and tied the game. Joe Morgan followed that up with a single and Griffey scored to put the game away.
It was the first time the Reds were 10 games over .500 this season.
May 28, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Reds 9, Dodgers 0 (25-16)
The Reds ran up the score and blew out the Dodgers at home. Joe Morgan and George Foster both had two hits, homeruns and three RBIs. Johnny Bench went three for four with a homerun, two runs and an RBI.
Pat Zachry threw a five hit shutout and improved to 4-0 on the season. He walked two and struck out nine.
May 26, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Braves 4, Reds 3 (24-16)
The Reds gave up two different one run leads late in the game as the Braves edged them by a run. The Reds scored the first run in the sixth when George Foster drove home Dave Concepcion with a sac. fly.
The Braves took the lead with two runs in the eighth and the Reds answered with two of their in the bottom half of the inning. In the top of the ninth, the bullpen once again let the Reds down as Rawly Eastwick was tagged for two more runs to give the Braves a one run lead. The Reds went down quietly in the ninth to end the game.
Eastwick dropped to 2-2 on the season as a great start by Gary Nolan went to waste. Nolan shut the Braves out on only two hits through seven innings.
May 25, 1976 at Riverfront Stadium
Reds 10, Braves 4 (24-15)
The Reds scored double digits for the second straight game as they trounced the Braves. George Foster had his second straight montster game. He went three for five with two homeruns, five RBIs and two runs. Johnny Bench drove in three runs and Ken Griffey scored three times.
Santo Alcala improved his record to a still perfect 4-0. He gave up four runs on four hits and six walks. Pedro Borbon threw the final three frames and held the Braves scoreless en route to his second save of the season.
May 23, 1976 at San Diego Stadium
Reds 11, Padres 0 (23-15)
The Reds finished their three game series over the Padres with an eleven run pasting. The Reds scored two in the second and three in the third, and then busted the game open in the sixth with six runs.
Lost in the offensive onslaught was a three hit shutout by Jack Billingham. he struck out five and didn’t walk a single batter.
May 22, 1976 at San Diego Stadium
Reds 3, Padres 2 (22-15)
The Red ended their two game skid by edging the Padres by a single run. The Reds scored all three of their runs in the third inning and Pat Zachry was phenomonal in his complete game win. He improved to 3-0 and gave up two runs on nine hits with six strikeouts.
May 21, 1976 at San Diego Stadium
Padres 4, Reds 2 (21-15)
The Padres made three errors and Gary Nolan and Rawly Eastwick held the Padres to only six hits, but the Padres managed to score four runs to the Reds two. Nolan dropped to 3-3 on the season and gave up four runs on five hits in seven innings.
May 20, 1976 at Candlestick Park
Giants 6, Reds 5 (21-14)
The Reds and Giants played an exciting back and forth affair that ended with the Giants on top. Don Gullett got into trouble early and didn’t even make it through the first inning. he gave up three runs on four hits with a walk while getting only two batters out.
In the top of the fourth, the Reds did their best to cut into the three run lead. Dave Concepcion led off with a walk and then moved to second on Joe Morgan’s single. Tony Perez then drove Concepcion home with a single before George Foster popped up to centerfield. Then Bob Bailey hit a ball deep enough to right field that allowed Morgan to score to cut the lead to a single run.
In the top of the fifth, Mike Lum led off the inning with a ground out to first base and then Pete Rose singled. Dave Concepcion then singled and Pete Rose scored on Bobby Murcer’s error in right field. Morgan then grounded out, but Concepcion was able to scamper home to give the Reds a one run lead.
It wouldn’t last long though. Already on their fourth pitcher, Sparky went to Fred Norman in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Giants tagged him for two runs on four hits as the lead was given back.
With two outs in the top of the eighth, the Reds tied the game up. George Foster went yard with nobody on base to even the score at five. Unfortunately the Giants would get to Will McEnaney in the bottom half of the inning. The Reds threatened by getting two runners on in the ninth, but neither Concepcion nor Morgan could drive one of them home. McEnaney took the loss and dropped to 0-2 on the season.