Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Reds vs. Phillies: One of Those Games

Cliff Lee

Eric Hartline-US PRESSWIRE

Ah, yes.  Another Cliff Lee start in which we will see him perform well between brief, demoralizing moments that inevitably lose him the game.  Last time out was a definitive Cliff Lee start for 2012, as he struck out 12 Brewers, but gave up three home runs and left after 7.2 innings””Just one of those games,” he said for what feels like the billionth time this year.  Still without a win at home, Lee will have to count on the sinister, overpowering mojo the Phillies seem to have against the Reds and hope it provides all the good luck or stabilization his starts have been missing.

Homer Bailey

Bailey has already hit his career high in innings pitched for the season.  Can we interpret this “high” to be his capacity as well?  Yes we can, as after a dominant July, he has gone 1-2 with an 8.24 ERA.  Of course, we’d be interpreting it right in the face of Reds pitching coach Bryan Price, whose list of brief cliches all clustered together indicates he disagrees.

“He’s aggressive. All the things that we want him to do, he’s doing. His bullpens have been really good between his starts. We’re really happy with the way he’s feeling. The strength is good. He just hasn’t been executing. We think we’ve put our finger on it. We hope to see better results moving forward.”

Bryan Price

Here’s hoping the Reds’ fingers are far from Homer Bailey!

The Offenders

Three wins in a row and an offense scoring their second highest amount of runs last night, the Phillies seem to have what baseball scientists are calling “momentum.”  Despite the Reds’ second best record in the game and hot performances of late, they–except for Jay Bruce–can’t seem to get their shit together against the Phillies, and that inferiority complex might just be the missing piece for Lee to thrive and the offense to score double digits.

Of course, Homer Bailey hasn’t really given many of the Phillies breathing room over the last few years.  Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins are the best performers against him, hitting .273 with 4 RBI and .286, respectively.  But again, he’s been terrible lately, so, cheers.

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