Reds 12, Brewers 4
One of the things I like about Dusty Baker is he says things that other manager's don't. Like this:
"That's a huge win for us tonight. It's the difference between being 1 1/2 back and 3 1/2 back."
Everyone knows how important a good start is for the Reds. Baker talks about it openly. I don't think that puts more pressure on the players; it just acknowledges the importance of these early NL Central games.
The Reds finally hit tonight: 14 hits, four sac flies, two-run homers from Adam Dunn and Corey Patterson.
Josh Fogg was pretty good in his second start. He went five innings, allowing only one earned run on four hits. Two other runs scored as a result of two Reds' errors in the fifth.
"I told Griff: Get me 12 a night and I'll be a pretty good pitcher," Fogg said.
Reds got aggressive on the base paths and it led to two runs in the second. Brandon Phillips singled and Dunn walked to start the inning. With Jeff Keppinger at the plate, Phillips stole third. Dunn stole two pitches later.
Scott Hatteberg lofted a flyball into shallow right. It was a risk sending a runner, even one as fast as Phillips. But he slid past Jason Kendall as the throw arrived from Corey Hart. It skipped past Kendall, allowing Dunn to score as well.
Ryan Braun got the Brewers on the board with home run on the ninth pitch of his at-bat in the fourth.
Fogg gave up a two-out hit to pitcher Dave Bush in the fifth. Kendall followed with a slow roller that Ryan Freel bare-handed at third. He threw wildly to first. The runners ended up and at second and third. Fogg got the groundball he needed. But it went right through Phillips. Both runners scored to make it 3-2.
"It seemed lie that woke us up even more," Baker said.
It sure looked like it. The Reds came right back with three in the sixth. A big play in the inning came when Phillips took second on Dunn's sac fly to left.
"That's what we preach: Be aggressive," Baker said. "It's not hard with these guys. They're an aggressive bunch of guys."
They kept adding on, as Jack McKeon liked to say: two in the seventh, three in the eighth, two in the ninth.