It only counts as one

You have to love the innocence of a child who can still run around a baseball field with a smile on their face after just getting pounded 22-5. They know that an ice cream cone awaits them just a short drive away.

As I helped my 4-year old son get ready for bed last night, I put my arm around him and broke the news that the Reds lost worst than we did.

A loss is a loss. It only counts as one. Didn’t you know that would be the angle that an optimistic Reds fan would take after the debacle last night?

The Phillies wasted no time serving the Reds what would end up being the largest margin of defeat in franchise history. Philadelphia scored ten runs in the first inning, nine of which were charged to starter Johnny Cueto (8-5), who was only able to record two outs.

The Cincinnati bullpen did not perform much better. Daniel Ray Herrera relieved Cueto in the first. He lasted 2 1/3 innings and gave up three runs. Nick Masset went two innings and was touched up for 4 runs (3 earned). Carlos Fisher and Josh Roenicke each held the Phillies scoreless until Paul Janish took the mound in the bottom of the eighth.

Yes, Paul Janish.

Janish pitched an inning on May 6 in a 15-3 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers. He saw his earned run average take a real beating last night by allowing six runs in the one frame he was on the hill.

Offensively, the Reds could do nothing against Cole Hamels (5-5). It does take some pressure off when you are pitching with a 10-0 lead after one inning. Nevertheless, Hamels was dominant in the seven innings he was out there, giving up just three hits and a run.

The only thing you can do after a game like this is forget about it. The Reds (40-41) have now officially played half of their 162 games. They are in the interesting position of being only 3 1/2 games out of first place, but only 4 games ahead of last place. They are truly a team performing a balancing act with a chance to fall on either side of mediocrity. Which way will they go?

Are the Reds still in it? Absolutely.

Do they have a lot of questions that must be answered? Absolutely.

Let’s hope they find some answers starting tonight. It will be Aaron Harang (5-8, 3.86) against J.A. Happ (5-0, 2.96).

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