Left fielder also records fifth inning outfield assist for Reds
By Cody Pace
CINCINNATI -- Reds' outfielder Adam Duvall has hit his share of home runs this season, but none of them were quite like the one he hit in the fourth inning off Wade Miley in Sunday's 5-4 loss to the Mariners.
Miley attacked Duvall early, dropping a first-pitch changeup in the strike zone to get ahead. Duvall didn't let the next one get past him, though, and the 89 mile-per-hour fastball was pulled deep into the left-center stands, landing 457 feet from home plate, the longest home run by a Reds player this season and the 15th longest by any Major League player.
"I didn't know that," Duvall said of his homer's distance. "I was just finally glad to see one fall. I feel like I hit the ball good this series but didn't have too much to show for it. But no, I didn't know that."
His eighth homer of the year was a welcome reprieve from a short 0-for-7 slide Duvall had fallen into after getting a single in his first two at-bats on Friday. For Duvall, the home run felt like the culmination of some good swings that hadn't produced any results.
"Hits, whenever you get a hit, you take a deep breath and everything's good," Duvall said. "I've felt like I've taken some really good swings lately. Hopefully there'll be more of that."
But Duvall wasn't just about the bat on Sunday. After hitting the home run in the bottom of the fourth, Duvall took to left field in the top of the fifth and watched Reds starter Alfredo Simon unravel a little bit, allowing three hits, two walks and two runs to the first six batters of the inning.
When Mariners' catcher Steve Clevenger hit a single down the left-field line with Kyle Seager on second base, he quickly fielded it and threw the ball home, nailing Seager trying to score and ultimately save the Reds another run.
"I was aggressive, I was kind of shaded into that hole because I knew if he hit it in there, I had to get it out pretty quick, so I charged it hard," Duvall said. "I tried to get rid of it as fast as I could and as low as I could, that way the runner at first wouldn't advance. It ended up taking a good hop, and we got the guy."
When Duvall came over from the Giants last summer, he was a corner infielder but has been asked to do the best he can in the outfield for the sake of his bat. So far, both have come through, as he's not only been solid at the plate, but he has six Defensive Runs Saved and a 3.8 Ultimate Zone Rating and ranks second in both categories among left fielders coming into play Sunday.
"I work a lot on my defense and any time you get to showcase that hard work, it's gratifying," Duvall said.
Cody Pace is an reporter for MLB.com based in Cincinnati. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.