The Cincinnati Reds needed something to change. After the Cardinals took two of three from the Reds at Great American Ballpark, they were running out of "tomorrows." Fortunately, the last two "tomorrows" have resulted in big wins against the Oakland Athletics.
On Tuesday, the Reds slipped past the Athletics thanks to a beautiful pitching performance by Mat Latos and a long ball off the bat of Jay Bruce.
"It didn't matter how we won today," Reds manager Dusty Baker said after the win. "Fact is, we just needed a win. We needed to put all the negatives and stuff behind us and get rid of what happened the other day."
Latos held the A's scoreless through seven and a third innings while striking out three and scattering four hits.
"I was scuffling today with the offspeed pitches," Latos said. "Curveballs around the neck and sliders below the toes.
Throughout the night, Latos pitched himself out of jams. In the first, he allowed a one-out double to Eric Sogard and a two-out walk to Yoenis Cespedes before inducing a groundout to Brandon Phillips. In the third, Coco Crisp reached on a one-out triple but was stranded. The A's also loaded the bases in the fifth before Latos got Cespedes to ground into a forceout.
Latos got support little by little. In the second, Jay Bruce led off the inning with a home run to center, his 23rd of the year. Phillips added a run in the third with an RBI single to center and the final run came in the fifth with a bunt off the bat of Derrick Robinson.
J.J. Hoover came in and finished the eighth before Aroldis Chapman finished off the game with his 26th save of the year.
Wednesday it was about Corky Miller and Jay Bruce. The duo drove in five combined runs in the Reds 6-5 win over the A's.
Miller, who has spent much of the season down in Triple-A Louisville logged his first two double game of his career. His family was on hand to watch it all go down.
"It was good," Miller said. "They haven't seen me play a lot, maybe up in Chicago. Having them here, especially with the family day for the Reds, it was fun. It was fun looking out there and seeing them."
"I think that we need every win from this point out," Bruce said. "And I think that's something we expect out of ourselves. The A's have been playing good baseball all year, and we played a little better these two days. I think that's hopefully a sign of what's to come."
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