Nunez passed ball, Sheffield wild pitch gift Reds 7-6 win
Published 11:32 pm Sunday, May 16, 2021
DENVER (AP) — Dom Nunez’s passed ball allowed home the tying run in the ninth inning and Jordan Sheffield’s wild pitch scored the go-ahead run, gifting the Cincinnati Reds a 7-6 win over the Colorado Rockies on Sunday.
Colorado hit a batter in the ninth and botched a double play. Then the Rockies wasted a chance to retie the game by committing a baserunning blunder in the bottom half.
“We were down, end of a road trip and everybody just kept playing,” Reds manager David Bell said. “So many good things happened, but it’s bit exhausting playing these games and being a part of them.”
Cincinnati trailed 6-1 after seven innings but closed with a four-run eighth after loading the bases against Yency Almonte. Tyler Naquin had a two-run single off Justin Lawrence, Eugenio Suárez hit a sacrifice fly and Shogo Akiyama singled in a run with his third hit.
Mychal Givens (1-2) nicked Jonathan India on the left elbow pad with an 83 mph changeup leading off the ninth, and Tucker Barnhart grounded into a forceout as shortstop Trevor Story bounced his throw to the pitcher covering first, wasting a chance for a double play.
Nick Senzel singled, Nick Castellanos fouled out and Naquin walked, loading the bases.
With Suárez at the plate, Givens threw a high fastball with an 0-1 count that tailed in and bounced off Nunez’s glove to the backstop as Barnhart scored.
“I thought about stealing home, but I got a passed ball so it made it easier,” Barnhart jokingly said.
Suárez walked, Sheffield relieved and threw a 2-2 slider to Tyler Stephenson that bounced under Nunez’s glove, went to the backstop and bounced up the third-base line as Senzel scored on Colorado’s second wild pitch of the game.
Connor Joe led off the ninth against Tejay Antone with his second double of the game, and Story popped out on an 0-for-5 afternoon that included four strikeouts.
Joe held up initially and made it only to third on Ryan McMahon’s one-out single to center. Garrett Hampson then grounded to India at second, who started a game-ending 4-6-3 double play to give Antone his second save.
“It took a perfect turn and we got it right,” Bell said. “What a double play Jonathan and Geno turned to end it.”
Sean Doolittle (3-0) struck out two in a one-hit eighth.
Reds starter Jeff Hoffman gave up five runs — two earned — five hits and three walks in four innings.
Colorado’s Antonio Senzatela allowed one run and four hits in seven innings with a walk and a wild pitch.
“Senza gave us a great start. We were in a position and then the bullpen had a tough day,” manager Bud Black said. “We couldn’t get that big hit to get us back to even or take the lead.”
Akiyama had an RBI single in the second, but the Rockies built a 5-1 lead in the fourth on Josh Fuentes’ two-run double, Hoffman’s run-scoring throwing error on a bunt, Raimel Tapira’s sacrifice fly and Joe’s RBI double.
Yonathan Daza had an RBI single in the fifth, helped by Akiyama’s throwing error in left.
Cincinnati reliever Amir Garrett returned from a five-game suspension for his part in inciting a benches-clearing incident against the Chicago Cubs on May 1. Garrett screamed, pounded his chest and took a few steps toward home plate after striking out Anthony Rizzo.
The Cubs, led by Javier Baez, took exception and came onto the field. No punches were thrown but major league baseball gave Garrett a seven-game suspension and fined him. The suspension was reduced to five games on appeal.
“I’m not going to throw others under the bus but I think that was kind of steep, five games,” Garrett said Sunday morning. “It is what it is. They probably wanted to make an example; I’ll be an example. It’s all good. I can take it.”
Garrett struck out two in a scoreless inning off relief Sunday.
Nunez thought he had had a two-run homer when his shot down the line in right hugged the foul pole. It was ruled a homer but after a review it was called foul.
Reds: 1B Mike Moustakas (bruised heel) missed his second straight game but is improving, Bell said.
Rockies: Placed LHP Ben Bowden on the 10-day injured list with a left shoulder strain and recalled LHP Lucas Gilbreath from Triple-A Albuquerque. … OF Charlie Blackmon (right groin strain) was out of the starting lineup for the second straight game. He pinch hit in the eighth and struck out.
Reds: RHP Sonny Gray (0-2, 3.55) will open a three-game series against San Francisco on Monday night.
Rockies: RHP Jon Gray (4-3, 2.93) takes the mound Monday night in the first of three games at San Diego.