20 in 20 ends with loss
The Reds concluded a stretch of 20-straight games by dropping game No. 20 in a 2-1 loss to the Pirates.
That meant Cincinnati dropped two of three in the series. It snapped a six road series unbeaten streak.
The good news is they emerged with a 12-8 record in those 20 games, which began with 14-straight games against teams with winning records.
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The Three Stars:
No. 3 star: Matt Hague, PIT — 1-for-4, two-run double. Hague’s two-out double to right-center field in the sixth was the game-winner. Hague also saved his team two runs by catching a Jay Bruce bullet to first base in the top of the first.
“Jay hit the heck out of that ball,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “That ball could have been down that corner but it wasn’t. We kind of had him reeling in the very, very beginning. But then he settled down.”
No. 2 star: Johnny Cueto — 7 ip, 5 H, 2 ER, 4 BB (2 int), 5 K, 103 pitches/65 strikes, 21 of 30 first-pitch strikes. Cueto was very good most of the night but really paid for issuing a two-out walk to Neil Walker in the sixth the set up the game-changing rally.
“I would have liked to get him out. That’s how baseball goes,” Cueto said. “The guy got a good hit. I believe I still threw a very good game.”
No. 1 star: A.J. Burnett, PIT — 7 ip, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 103 pitches/65 strikes also. The Bruce scorcher in the first inning was the start of his retiring 17 batters in a row.
“You can’t take anything from him,” Baker said. “He was excellent tonight. He had good command, good control. He got wild a couple of times. There weren’t many deep counts, which sometimes he could be prone to do.”