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Reds Best Games
I enlisted the help of Reds historian Greg Rhodes and the Reds Hall of Fame and Museums Chris Eckes, and together we came up with what we regard as arguably the 40 best regular season home victories in modern Reds history 1956present. We didnt include milestone games such as Pete Roses hit No. 4,192 because we basically knew they were coming. The acid test was this: The game had to stand by itself. For me, Reds modern history began when Frank Robinson donned the wishbone C as a rookie in 1956, and played with such luminaries as Ted Kluszewski, Wally Post, Gus Bell and Joe Nuxhall. Im going to stick with that.
Here they are in descending order. Go to our Enquirer Reds Facebook page and tell us what you think.
May 2, 1988: The Reds were up 30 and were one strike away from notching their first perfect game as a franchise when pitcher Ron Robinson began losing his shirt faster than a tourist playing threecard Monte. First went the perfect game and nohitter on a single to Montreal Expos pinchhitter Wallace Johnson, then the shutout on a 2run homer to Tim Raines and finally the complete game when manager Pete Rose summoned Johnny Franco to close it out. But Robinson didnt lose everything. He got the victory.
May 7, 2013: One strike from a Reds loss, pinchhitter Devin Mesoraco goes deep to tie the game 44, and the next batter, ShinSoo Choo, does the same to win it all off the most unlikelytogiveuplongballs Atlanta Braves reliever Craig Kimbrel. He had struck out the first two hitters in the 9th and was going for his 100th career save, having allowed only one homer all season. But Kimbrel boxed himself into a corner by running the count full to Mesoraco, who blasted the next pitch over the centerfield wall. Four pitches later, Choo went downtown in the 54 Reds victory.
June 16, 1978: Tom Seaver nohits St. Louis 40 after giving up a leadoff walk in the 9th. We waived our special occasions rule to allow for this one, because it was a relatively taut game. For those who wonder why we didnt include any of Jim Maloneys nohitters, its because one of them was at Wrigley Field, another came in loss the nono was later defrocked because it was broken up in extra innings and the other one came in a 100 victory, totally devoid of any game suspense beyond whether Maloney would get the nohitter.
Apri 15, 1969: Trailing the San Francisco Giants 85 going into the 9th inning, the Reds score 3 runs on a Bobby Tolan RBI double and RBI singles by Tony Perez and Johnny Bench to send it to extra innings. The Giants scored twice in the top of the 10th, but the Reds tied it back up with an RBI groundout by Alex Johnson and a sacrifice fly by Lee May. Johnson led off the 12th with a triple off future Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry, and when the Giants intentionally walked the bases full, hoping for double play, Bench made them pay with an RBI single off Perry for the 1110 victory.
July 5, 1980: Behind one of the best and longest Reds relief appearances in history, the great
Mario Soto replaces Bruce Berenyi 6 runs, 5 hits with one out in the first inning of a
doubleheader, and throws 8 2/3 innings of 3hit, shutout ball as the Reds come back to
win 86. The Reds hitting stars were Dave Concepcion, Ken Griffey Sr., Ray Knight and
Joe Nolan. Joe Morgan was back with the Astros after eight seasons in Cincinnati. Soto
struck him out to end the first inning and twice popped him out.
July 1, 1973: The Los Angeles Dodgers starter Don Sutton is a twostrike screwball away from dropping the Reds 12 games back in the National League West race, when thirdstring catcher Hal King rips a 3run homer scoring Tony Perez and Darrel Chaney to give the Reds a stunning 43 victory. The Reds win the second game of the doubleheader on a twoout walkoff single by Perez. Ignited by Kings home run and Perez single, the Reds go on a 6026 tear from July 1 forward to win the West, 3 1/2 games ahead of the Dodgers.