There was a lot of frustration from the Diamondbacks side tonight. As you might imagine. Manager Kirk Gibson wasn't in a very talkative mood but laid the blame on himself for the way he handled the bullpen and a couple of key plays that his team didn't execute.
In the eighth inning the D-backs had already given up two of their four-run lead when Nix hits a long ball to right field with runners on first and third. Upton air-mailed the ball allowing not only Hernandez to score from third (which was inevitable) but Janish to advance to second on the throw. The next batter, Phillips, hits a ground rule double which scores Janish to tie the game. If Upton hits the cut-off man and holds Janish at first he doesn't score on that play.
"It happened quick and we couldn't stop it," Gibby said after the game. "That one play to Upton was a huge play. The key being the tying run's on first base so that's really the most important run at the time...That was poor execution on our part. We're going to take that pressure and this time we didn't stand up to it."
Heilman gave up five hits and four runs in his 1.1 innings of work. He was also frustrated by a his own performance that he felt let down the offense which scored enough runs to win the game and his fellow pitcher Rodrigo Lopez who deserved the win as the starter.
"As a team, we want to win these games. We want to win every game but when we have a lead like that we need to win those games," Heilman said.
The play that got the most attention was the bunt squeeze that Dusty Baker called for in the ninth inning with the elderly Edmonds on third. Heilman said he considered the possibility of the squeeze there but gave credit to Heisey for laying down a great bunt.
Gibby tipped his cap to Baker for calling for the squeeze at that point, in that count, "They executed that perfectly. You can see in the first two games that we played these guys why they are in first place."
Offensively, the D-backs put up big numbers with Upton, Young and LaRoche all driving in two runs.
It was curious that the Reds choose to pitch to LaRoche with a base open and a runner on second in the seventh inning.Reynolds, who continues to struggle (0-for-3, 3 SOs), was on deck, but Baker choose to pitch to Adam and paid the price when LaRoche drove the ball over the right field fence to give the D-backs a 7-3 lead.
It should have been the mistake that cost the Reds the game but against the D-backs, you always have another chance at redemption.