Reds prevail in Sunday afternoon slugfest

Reds prevail in Sunday afternoon slugfest

Reds prevail in Sunday afternoon slugfest
CINCINNATI -- A solo home run by Reds third baseman Todd Frazier epitomized Sunday's wild affair on a 90-degree afternoon at Great American Ball Park. In the fourth inning, Frazier flung his bat at a pitch from Rockies starter Jamie Moyer. The bat escaped Frazier's grip. The ball sailed 379 feet into the left-field stands.

"I felt the bat slipping out of my hands," said Frazier. "It seemed like my bottom hand was off, and then I hit it. At first I thought it was a popup. I took a couple of steps, then I saw the ball. It was like, 'Oh, man'. It was pretty cool."

Frazier's inexplicable bomb was one of nine home runs hit on Sunday, a single-game record at Great American Ball Park, which surpassed even its reputation in the Reds' 7-5 victory in the finale of a three-game series before 29,368 sun-drenched fans.

"The ball was flying out today," said Reds manager Dusty Baker. "That's too many home runs for them. I'll take all of ours."

Homer Haven
The Reds and Rockies combined for nine homers on Sunday, setting the single-game record for Great American Ball Park.
Homers Opponent Date
9 Rockies 5/27/2012
8 Padres 8/13/2011
8 Phillies 9/23/2005
8 Padres 8/13/2004

Joey Votto and Jay Bruce each hit solo home runs, and Brandon Phillips added a three-run home run in the third inning off of Rockies starter Jamie Moyer. Bruce's home run was his first in 16 games and 60 at-bats.

Carlos Gonzalez homered twice for Colorado.

"The ball travels real well in this park," said Rockies manager Jim Tracy. "I think the evidence of it is the Frazier home run. It looked like he had maybe a hand and a half on the bat when he hit it. But what are you going to do? The ball went over the fence. We can't catch those."

It was the most home runs hit in a game at Great American Ball Park since August 13, 2011, when the Reds and Padres combined for eight.

The 29 home runs combined for the Reds and their opponents during the seven-game homestand was the most for a homestand of seven games or fewer in Great American Ball Park history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

"If you make quality pitches, you could be playing in a shoebox and it won't matter," Baker said. "If you don't, you could be playing in Yellowstone."

Lost amid Sunday's home-run hysteria was a laborious, yet effective outing by Reds starter Mat Latos, who allowed just five hits -- all of which were homers.

Latos (4-2) was more efficient on Sunday. He pitched 7 1/3 innings, did not walk a batter and had three strikeouts over 96 pitches.

Latos became the first pitcher in Reds history, and just the 11th in Major League history, to earn a victory after allowing five home runs.

"It's a bummer as a pitcher to see the ball leave the park five times," Latos said. "If I get my pitches down, maybe I'm giving up ground balls and not fly balls. I don't make excuses for the ballpark."

The first three hits in Sunday's game were home runs.

Votto's 430-foot blast to center in the first inning put the Reds ahead 1-0. Troy Tulowitzki tied the score with a solo shot, but Bruce's 11th home run of the season gave the Reds a 2-1 lead in the second. Phillips put the Reds ahead, 5-1, with a three-run home run in the third.

"To get momentum like that at home is always good," Bruce said. "Winning the series is key. That's what you hope for."

Moyer (2-5) allowed seven earned runs in five innings. Four of his seven hits allowed were home runs.

An RBI double by Zack Cozart scored Ryan Hanigan to give the Reds a 7-2 lead in the fourth. Cozart extended his hitting streak to seven games. His 19 extra-base hits lead all Major League rookies.

The longest home run of the afternoon came off the bat of Rockies right fielder Michael Cuddyer, a 448-foot blast that made the score 7-3. Cuddyer's homer struck the mid-portion of the batter's eye in center. The Rockies created a tense moment for the Reds' bullpen when they put runners on first and third with one out in the eighth. The situation prompted Baker to bring in closer Aroldis Chapman for an extended outing.

Chapman struck out Gonzalez, then retired Tulowitzki on a fly ball to center. Chapman issued a leadoff walk in the ninth before getting Jordan Pacheco to ground into a double play to earn his third save.

"I didn't want Chappy to go that many pitches, but that was the best matchup at the time," Baker said. "He's from Cuba, this was Cuban weather. But it wasn't an easy decision."

Jeff Wallner is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.