What they said…
Before this road trip, I wrote on here that a 7-3 road trip could get the Reds away from any lingering thoughts of being Trade Deadline sellers. They are now only one away from win No. 7 after a 4-0 victory over the Giants that provided them with a four-game series sweep. It’s a 6-1 road trip thus far with three games remaining against a Padres team very deep in struggles right now. This team feels as hot as it did when it was racking up wins while Joey Votto was injured in 2012. The vibe is different. There is a greater expectation to win, even when things go wrong like it did on Saturday in the ninth inning before a win in extras.
There is still a long way to go. At 43-38 at the halfway point, the Reds are on pace for 86 wins. That won’t be enough, especially with the Brewers in control with a 6 1/2 game lead in the NL Central. The Reds are now percentage points ahead of the Cardinals to be alone in second place for the first time this season.
I wrote two stories after the game today. Read all about the win and sweep on MLB.com/Reds.com, but here are some quotes that weren’t all used in my work:
“A couple of years ago we were labeled on some West Coast swing as a downfall, I think the last couple of years we’ve kind of shut people up about it. We’re not out of it, as you can see by the way we’re playing and the way we’ve been playing the last five, six series. We’re definitely in it, there’s a lot of hope in the way we’re playing and just slowly trying to gain ground. Unfortunately the other teams are winning, too. We’ll get a chance at some of them when we get back.” — Reds pitcher Homer Bailey, who threw his fourth career shutout.
“I saw him executing good quality pitches with a really strong mix. He used all of his pitches. He had a good slider, threw the curveball for strikes and the split. He had very good fastball location. I thought he and Brayan had a nice little back and forth going, a good communication going and a good flow. When the outs come quickly, it’s not necessarily like Homer to go out there and go into the ninth of a game with 93 pitches. That tells you a lot about his pitch efficiency. He tends to strike guys out which gets his pitch count up a little bit higher. He was extremely efficient and executing good pitches and guys played great defense in some tough conditions with the sun and the wind today.” — Reds manager Bryan Price on Bailey.
“He threw two [no-hitters] already, he’s got that feeling, he knows what it takes. In my case, I was very excited about it, but at the same time I wasn’t thinking about it, I had a job to do, I had a game to call and that’s exactly what I was doing, trying to get him deep in the baseball game and he threw a complete game. That one was very, very happy for all of us.” — Reds catcher Brayan Pena on Bailey.
“This series was indicative of what we need to do to be successful. We can’t always turn a one-run game over to the bullpen or ask a starter to not make any mistakes at all. The ability to create separation completely changes what the opposing team and manager can do. You can’t be as aggressive. You can but you‘ll be restricted on what you do on the bases and how you utilize the talent on your club, takes away the bunt and other things. It’s been great to see. It’s been a lot of fun.” — Price on the offense getting add-on runs late.
“We got them at the right time, I think. That’s a really good team. It’s still a playoff team in my opinion. They’re far from over, over there. They have too good of a team. I’m just happy to get out of here while they were struggling a little bit. Our pitching has been so good. We feel good about ourselves.” — Reds LF Skip Schumaker on the Giants, who have lost 15 of 19 while the Reds have won a season-high five straight, eight of nine and 14 of 18.