When a teams offense has issues scoring runs like the Cincinnati Reds, they have to hope for a brilliant performance from their pitching staff, which is exactly what they got on Saturday afternoon in a 1-0 win over the Washington Nationals.
That performance came from starter Johnny Cueto, who went seven innings allowing just four hits and striking out nine while keeping the Nationals from plating a run. Jonathan Broxton and Aroldis Chapman both pitched in relief and didn't allow a single hit through the final two innings to close out the game.
It did look bleak early however. After allowing a leadoff single to Denard Span, a fielder's choice and a walk, Cueto had two on and one out. Adam LaRoche lined a ball to center which Billy Hamilton originally misplayed but make a great leaping play to get the out. Cueto retired the next batter to end the streaky first inning.
"You're really looking at what's made us successful, and what makes most teams successful: the pitching and the defense and good situational hitting," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "You don't have to be dynamic offensively; you just have to be productive."
"Early in the game, the humidity was beating him up, but boy, when we took that lead, it was like a whole different guy out there," Price said of his starting pitcher.
"In order to get on a roll and really start feeling good about what we're doing, it starts with putting wins together," Price said.
The win ended Cincinnati's seven-game skid. They look to win their second in a row Sunday afternoon as Mat Latos takes the mound against the Nationals.
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Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Baseball, Billy Hamilton, Brayan Pena, Bryan Price, Chris Heisey, Cincinnati, Cincinnati Reds, Johnny Cueto, Jonathan Broxton, Mat Latos, MLB, Skip Schumaker