The missed bunt

When the season is over, this will be one of the games that will sting a little more if the Reds don’t win the NL Central. A 5-4 loss in 16 innings to the Cardinals featured more than a few missed opportunities.

The one missed chance that hurt the most? In the 15th inning with runners on the corners and two outs, Chris Heisey attempted a bunt and missed. Shin-Soo Choo was thrown out breaking for home to end the inning. Reds manager Dusty Baker said that Heisey was bunting on his own there.

“You’re not going to try and squeeze bunt with two outs,” Baker said. “Heis — he thought that the third baseman was back. He’s bunting for a hit. Choo was trying to score. He didn’t see the ball go past him. By then, you’re in no-man’s land. He was going to try to score. That was a tough play.”

*A couple of plays before Heisey’s bunt attempt, Choo was on first base with a leadoff single when Brandon Phillips — who notched his 100th RBI earlier in the game — laid down a sac bunt. That decision came from the dugout.

“I just did what I was told,” Phillips said. “It’s a team game, that’s what it’s all about. You want to move the guy over in that situation. I just tried to go over there and do my job. Whatever the team needs me to do, that’s what I do.”

The Pirates lost to the Brewers tonight so also missed was a chance to pick up a game. The Reds will need a win Thursday to win the four-game series.

Jeremy Warnemuende will have more in the game story soon.

Some other quick notes:

*Joey Votto went 0-for-7 for the first time in his career. The 3-4-5 spots of Votto, Jay Bruce and Heisey combined to go 0-for-19 with two walks.

*Phillips’ 18th homer of the season in the fifth gave him his 100th RBI of the season. He is the first Reds 2B to reach 100 since Joe Morgan in 1976. The last second baseman in the Majors to do that was Dan Uggla in 2010.

*Manny Parra was not available tonight because he was away from the team. His wife was having a baby.

*In terms of innings, this was the longest game in the history of GABP, which opened in 2003.

*Bronson Arroyo had three sacrifice bunts, a new career-high. He is the first Reds to do that since Aaron Harang on July 20, 2005. Arroyo leads the NL with a career-high 15 sac bunts this season.

17 Comments

According to the box score, they went 0-19.

Everyone is bashing Votto. He is in a slump that all players go through. All Baker has to do is move him to the two hole to get better pitches because Choo is on so much and they would have to pitch to him. It doesn’t take a genius to figure this out, On the other hand we certainly don’t have a genius as a manager.

So because our three hole hitter, who is suppose to be so great, is struggling, we need to change the lineup around to accomodate him? Please. He gets plenty of good pitches, he either fouls them off or misses them. How do you know the opponents aren’t scared of you? When you just hit balls to the opposite field, yet they continue to pitch you outside, basically saying, here, hit them over there, we don’t care, you won’t hurt us. Last nights error was embarrassing. Votto is easily my leasst favorite player on the team.
Curt

Baker is an idiot….you don’t bunt the Roc, who has maybe layed down two bunts his entire career….and sure as hell dont bunt Phillips who is about your only threat at the top of the lineup right now, other than Choo…no excuses, plain stupidity…..not to mention, he tried to bunt cozart with the fastest man in the league on base….comical…

Heisey’s missed bunt shouldn’t surprise anyone. The Reds have doing this kind of stuff all year long. They are the most undisciplined and unfundamentally sound team in baseball. If it wasn’t a missed bunt , it would’ve been a base running blunder. (Oh, Choo THOUGHT Heisey actually made contact) Ron is right. Baker will NEVER be accused of being a genius. He won’t move Votto. He doesn’t want to make him angry . Then Dusty wouldn’t be allowed to call him by his nickname and cover his butt for any mistakes he makes. Wake up Mr. Castillinii. Dusty Baker is a joke. . I almost forgot. I wonder when Ludwick will play everyday. He’s only one of the hottest hitters on the team . Oh, he needs his rest . The hell with winning the division.

Jim, I can saying with a lot of confidence, that you don’t watch every team play, so I don’t think that is a very accurate statement.
Curt

I don’t see any quotes from Baker regarding his thinking with regard to either the Phillips or Mez bunts. Anyone ask those questions in the post-game? Thom said that the tough questions would be asked.

The Reds’ media don’t ask tough questions. They are all afraid of Baker. He wouldn’t know how to answer them anyway. He’s too busy thinking of ways to cover his butt for all the stupid decisions he makes.

Ok… Votto is struggling and right now cant hit a fastball. No one on this team can bunt. Ok lets go into the game tonight with those two facts in hand. So no trying to bunt the fastest man in baseball over to second or third. And no trying to bunt the batter in front of Votto unless he was hopeing that they would walk Votto, I get that. Tough one there but still want to see Phillips swinging. Man the middle of this order is really struggling. Maybe in the playoffs we will finally see a complete team with pitching, hitting, and defense. Ok enough random comments…

Votto can’t pull the ball with any authority, tries to punch everything to left field.

Something tells me that either his knee isn’t right or he’s slowly morphing into another Hal Morris.

Agreed. That strikeout in the first was hilarious. Does anyone else strike themselves out mentally more than Votto. Dude is a headcase.
Curt

We will never see this team reach it’s full potential with Baker as it’s manager. Plain and simple. Why would anyone expect this team to change it’s stripes simply because it’s the playoffs. Not going to happen. I still feel Votto’s problem is mental. He makes everything way too hard. There is no doubt about his talent.
There is simply NO fire on this team and it starts with it’s manager. I know you’re not going to change an umpire’s call but show a little emotion once in awhile. Where is Lou ?

Wow!

Knowing Votto’s inability to get the job done in big games why would you bunt Phillips
thinking that Votto would drive in a run in that situation ? What ever happened to the rockets Votto of the past drove over the right field wall? Now he slap hits the opposite way , or hits it down to the second baseman. Votto is obviously tired/mentally exhausted & sometimes appears to be on another planet. Could it be the $220,000,000 extension is getting to him ?

Agree. There is something wrong with him. He is not productive at all.

I believe one of the issues with Votto is that he has started 139 out of our 140 games and and has played in all 140. With a guy that prepares for a game the way he does it can Finally get to you. Sometimes you have to REST your big horse in a game here and a game there to get him ready for the final stretch.

They have rested their big horses. Cozart and Choo have had enough days off.
Curt

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