For once, the Reds love L.A.
Big road trip. Huge road trip.
Most teams, including the Reds, come to the West Coast just hoping not to tailspin. Many are hopeful to come out of it .500 or could even accept being one under .500 for the trip. Wednesday’s 7-2 win over the Dodgers gave the Reds a 5-2 West Coast trip. They haven’t had a winning western journey since they went 7-4 in 2004. That was also the year of the last Reds sweep at Dodger Stadium (May 14-16).
“A real nice birthday present,” said manager Dusty Baker, who turned 62 today. “It’s first time I can remember in 10 years winning a game on my birthday. That’s the one thing I wanted today. That was the perfect ending to this West Coast trip.”
Every time the Dodgers win a game here, they play the familiar Randy Newman song “I Love LA.” I got pretty used to hearing since the Reds lost 12 times in a row at Dodger Stadium from 2006-09.
And not much of a celebrity wrap for this series. Last year, we had Harrison Ford among others. This year, it was only Larry King and Mary Hart — both on Tuesday night.
*Jonny Gomes was all over the field defensively today with some nice plays. One particularly marvelous
one came when he robbed James Loney with two outs in the third with runners on first and second. On Loney’s tailing fly to the left field foul line to end the inning, Gomes was fully laid out when he made the diving catch. Travis Wood thanked Gomes with a point. Gomes also made two other catches that were worthy of circles in the scorebook.
*Wood was so-so, despite the quality start. Only one run and five hits but the five walks (one intentional) made for some tense moments. Wood gave up an Ethier two-out double and two walks — one with the bases loaded — to force in a run.
*Scott Rolen was 3-for-5 with a pair of RBI doubles and a RBI single. Five of Rolen’s seven hits on this trip were doubles. He hasn’t felt great since fouling a ball off his left foot Sunday and missing Monday’s game.
*By not playing today, Drew Stubbs became the last Reds player to miss a game this season. He had played in all 69 previous games, with 64 starts.
*The Reds are 17-18 on the road this season.
“Some great defense and early runs. Everybody was spent from a short night here so we wanted to score early, which we did. We didn’t score more but it was enough.” — Dusty Baker
“Gomes played an outstanding outfield today. If the ball was going up, I wanted it hit to him the way he was playing today. We also had some good clutch double plays and that helped a lot.” — Travis Wood
“It really hurts. It kind of puts a little sting into us because if we get two runs we’re right back in that game. That was obviously a nice play.” — Dodgers manager Don Mattingly on Gomes’ third-inning catch
“We need to win series. I’ve been boring you guys to death saying the same thing for two years now. But we split in San Francisco, which you take. Maybe we could have got one more. They’re a good team too. We played well there and came here and obviously played real well. A 5-2 trip, I think we’d take that 10 out of 10 times before we left.” — Scott Rolen