Reds blow lead in 9th; lose to Twins 7-5
Published 12:17 am Wednesday, August 4, 2021
CINCINNATI (AP) — Jorge Polanco delivered a go-ahead, three-run homer in the ninth inning, lifting the Minnesota Twins to a 7-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night.
Heath Hembree (2-6) walked the first two Minnesota batters before striking out Brent Rooker. Polanco fouled off four two-strike pitches before connecting on a liner just inside the foul pole in right field.
Mitch Garver had a three-run homer in the fifth for the Twins, who had lost four of their previous five games.
Danny Coulombe (2-1) got the final out of the eighth. Alex Colomé allowed a single and walk to start the Cincinnati ninth before finishing for his third save and first since April 7.
Jonathan India’s two-run homer in the fifth off Kenta Maeda gave the Reds a 5-4 lead. Eugenio Suárez and Tucker Barnhart went deep on Maeda’s first two pitches in the third.
Cincinnati couldn’t hold the lead in the opener of a six-game homestand coming off a 5-2 road trip.
The Reds are trying to keep pace with NL Central-leading Milwaukee, which started the day 7½ games ahead. Cincinnati also trails San Diego for the second wild-card spot.
Cincinnati’s Joey Votto went 0-for-4 with a strikeout in his second game since a seven-game streak with at least one homer.
India, named on Monday July’s NL Rookie of the Month, followed Shogo Akiyama’s pinch-hit single with a blast off Maeda that landed 10 rows deep in the left field stands.
Maeda led off Minnesota’s fifth with a single to left. After Rooker walked with one out, Garver’s three-run shot landed in virtually the same spot as India’s homer in the top of the inning, giving the Twins a 4-3 lead.
Maeda lasted five innings, giving up seven hits and five runs with one walk and nine strikeouts. Cincinnati starter Tyler Mahle also went five, allowing six hits and four runs with two walks and five strikeouts.
Twins: LHP Charlie Barnes (0-1) is scheduled to make his second career start in the finale of the two-game series after becoming the second pitcher in club history to allow one or fewer runs and lose in his debut.
Reds: RHP Luis Castillo (5-10) has a 1.95 ERA since June 1, second-best in the majors behind Walker Buehler’s 1.77 for the Los Angeles Dodgers.