Cincinnati Reds have made the AT&T Park a home from home in the past four days after winning four in a row against the San Francisco Giants.
Homer Bailey was the hero on Sunday afternoon with a complete game shutout in the Reds 4-0 victory and the 28-year-old held on to secure his fourth career shutout and complete the four game sweep at the home of the Giants, the first time Cincinnati have achieved that feat since May 1972.
The starting pitcher was carving his way through the Giants batters but was denied the chance to pitch his third career no-hitter with two outs in the seventh innings when Buster Posey grabbed a single.
Bailey finished the day with fantastic figures: nine innings pitched, three hits and seven strikeouts. The victory continued the Reds superb run of form, winning eight of their last nine games and 14 of 18, according to MLB.com. Reds fans will be licking their lips at the prospect of taking on out of form San Diego Padres this week to continue their fine run of form.
Cincinnati Reds left fielder Skip Schumaker confirmed the wins were giving a feelgood factor around the team.
With Bailey providing a strong defensive cover for the Reds offence, they were given time to get into the game at put runs on the board. In the end, Bailey’s shutout was essential because the game could have easily slipped away.
Billy Hamilton lofted an RBI double to right field which saw Schumaker home but the tension mounted as the Reds failed to add to their opening score until the ninth innings with three Giant-killing runs. The victory moved the Reds into second place in the National League Central division by just .0008 percentage points with a 43-38 season record.
The majority of credit must be heaped on the Reds bullpen. In the four-game streak against the Giants, they outscored their opponents 20-6, with Reds starters 3-0 with a 1.11 ERA (four earned runs over 32 1/3 innings) with five walks and 26 strikeouts.
Bailey's a fine start to the game saw just one walk conceded but Buster Posey was able to sneak a single down right field to deny the pitcher, who was just seven outs from the no-hitter.
Despite the loss of the no-hitter, Reds remained in the driving seat and saw three runs home in the ninth to secure victory.
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