Jake Fraley leads Cincinnati Reds to comeback win over Phillies with ninth-inning double

Cincinnati Reds relief pitcher Luis Cessa (85) throws a pitch in the first inning of the MLB...
Cincinnati Reds relief pitcher Luis Cessa (85) throws a pitch in the first inning of the MLB National League game between the Cincinnati Reds and the Chicago Cubs at Great American Ball Park in downtown Cincinnati on Tuesday, April 4, 2023. The Reds led the Cubs after six innings.(Sam Greene//Cincinnati Enquirer)
Published: Apr. 9, 2023 at 8:08 PM EDT
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PHILADELPHIA (ENQUIRER) - Two outs from being swept on a quiet offensive weekend, Jake Fraley saved the day for the Cincinnati Reds with a three-run double in the top of the ninth inning.

The Reds loaded the bases against Seranthony Domínguez without the ball leaving the infield in the ninth inning. Domínguez walked two batters and TJ Friedl reached on an infield single to bring up Fraley with the Citizens Bank Park crowd of 39,129 growing more uneasy.

Fraley whiffed on his first two swings versus Domínguez before he lined a fastball down the right field line for a bases-clearing double in the Reds’ 6-4 comeback win over the Philadelphia Phillies. A helmetless Fraley let out a yell toward his teammates in the dugout once he reached second base.

Entering the ninth inning, the Reds were 3-for-18 with 21 runners left on base during the three-game series.

The Reds’ bullpen combined to pitch five scoreless innings, including a clean ninth inning to secure Ian Gibaut’s second career save.

Fraley’s three-run double saved the Reds when they paid the price for some of their miscues. Reds starting pitcher Connor Overton was far from perfect, giving up a two-run homer to Alec Bohm in the fourth inning when he threw him three straight changeups, but his defense didn’t do him many favors.

Kyle Schwarber attempted to score from first base on Nick Castellanos’ double to left field in the first inning, running through a stop sign from third-base coach Dusty Wathan. The relay throw from shortstop Kevin Newman was set to beat Schwarber to the plate, but the throw deflected off Schwarber’s shoulder and allowed him to score.

In the second inning, Newman booted a ground ball with two runners on base. The runner at second, Bryson Stott, scored easily as the ball rolled into left field. Overton induced a double play to the next batter to escape more damage.

Overton permitted six hits and three walks in four innings, lifted from his start before facing the Phillies lineup for a third time.

Takeaways from the Reds-Phillies series finale

1. Fraley’s first four plate appearances may not stand out from peeking at the box score, but he played a major role in driving starting pitcher Taijuan Walker out of the game after only 4 2/3 innings.

Fraley had two walks and a strikeout against Walker. He saw 26 pitches across those three plate appearances and there were only four pitches that caught a large chunk of the plate. Fraley missed a potential double that hooked foul by a few feet in the fifth inning, but he made the most of his time in the batter’s box against a pitcher who was having a solid start.

2. Reds reliever Fernando Cruz had trouble with his command in his first few relief outings of the regular season, but he looked more like the guy the Reds want to use in a high-leverage role Sunday. He pitched two scoreless innings with two strikeouts and four groundouts.

Cruz, who inherited a runner on first base with the top of the lineup coming to the plate in the fifth inning, pitched well against the heart of the Phillies batting order. He had great success locating his splitter, which was an issue for him when he walked four batters across his first two appearances.

3. Will Benson nearly contributed to the list of defensive miscues when he came up short on an attempted diving catch in the fourth inning near the left field line. Brandon Marsh was looking for an inside-the-park home run before he received a late stop sign from Wathan, the third-base coach, and he was stuck in a rundown between third base and home.

Injury report

Luke Weaver, making his first rehab start at Triple-A Louisville, tossed four hitless innings Sunday with four strikeouts and two walks. Weaver averaged 93.3 mph with his fastball and he had good results with his curveball and slider.

Reliever Lucas Sims followed Weaver with a scoreless inning in his first rehab outing. Sims allowed a hit and struck out a batter in 12 pitches, reaching 95 mph with his fastball.

Weaver will make at least one more rehab start before joining the Reds’ rotation.

This story was provided by our media partners at the Cincinnati Enquirer.

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