Reds Lose 5th Straight, 7-1 To Royals

Hamilton Has 5 Stolen Bases In Reds' 2-1 Loss To Cubs (Image 1)

While the Kansas City Royals are off to the best start in franchise history, the Cincinnati Reds are in a tailspin.
    
Jeremy Guthrie pitched six shutout innings and the Royals beat the Reds 7-1 on Wednesday night.
    
The Royals, who won for the fifth time in six games, improved to 26-14, the franchise’s best record after 40 games.
    
The Reds lost their fifth straight, a season high, to drop a season-worst four games below .500 (18-22).
    
Jason Marquis (3-4) was pulled after 3 2-3 innings, yielding four runs, four hits, two sacrifice flies, two walks and a wild pitch. In losing his past three starts, Marquis has surrendered 21 hits and 15 runs in 12 1-3 innings for a 15.33 ERA.
    
Will Marquis remain in the rotation?
    
“That’s a tough question when you’re struggling,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “That’s a tough question when you’ve lost five games in a row and there have been some really poor performances in those losses.”
    
The Royals tied a club record with 24 consecutive scoreless innings, which was set June 9-12, 1976. That streak ended in the seventh when Brandon Phillips’ two-out double off reliever Ryan Madson scored Zack Cozart.
    
Guthrie (4-2) pitched out of a bases-loaded, one-out predicament in the first inning and won his third straight start. He gave up five hits, walked two and struck out three. Guthrie retired 13 on fly balls and two on grounders.
    
Marquis thought his performance against the Royals was better than his previous two starts.
    
“There were a couple of hard hit balls, some splits that I left up,” Marquis said. “I thought I was taking a step in the right direction to try to get out of it. I have to take it one day at a time, it’s the only way I know how to do it. I was able to attack the bottom of the strike zone. The last two times, mechanically I couldn’t execute or get anything done.  Tonight I was able to attack the bottom of the strike zone.”
    
The Reds were outscored 10-1 in the two games at Kansas City.
    
“It’s all of us,” said Phillips, who had three hits. “We don’t separate and splinter off.  Our players work hard.  Our guys put in the work.  Our coaching staff puts in the time.  This coaching staff works harder than any staff I’ve ever been a part of.  We’ve got to find a will to get back into a game when we get down.  We’ve got to find a way to come in and pump strikes out of the bullpen.  It comes down to expectations.  It’s easy to say that it’s early, but one day we’re going to come in here and it won’t be.  We’ve got to play better baseball.”
    
Kansas City’s Mike Moustakas, who hit .212 last season, had three hits for his 16th multi-hit game to raise his average to .342.
    
Kendrys Morales and Alex Gordon drove in two runs each. Morales’ 32 RBIs ranks second in the American League.
    
“I can see why the Royals made it to the World Series last year,” Phillips said. “I give credit where it’s due and I feel like that’s the best team we’ve played.  We’ve played the Cardinals and they’re a good team, but the Royals are the best team we’ve played.”
    
GORDON’S CATCH
    
Gold Glove LF Alex Gordon crashed face first into the Royals’ bullpen fence to catch Todd Frazier’s scorcher to end the fifth. Gordon said his son imitates his fearless catches at home. “He says, ‘Hey, here goes Alex Gordon,’ runs into the wall and falls down,” Gordon said. “He’s probably going to do it tomorrow when I see him. It’s pretty funny. He does it just like Daddy. He runs into the wall and lays there for about 10 seconds. He’s got it down.”
    
TRAINER’S ROOM
    
Reds: LHP Manny Parra (strained neck), who struck out the side in his only inning Tuesday, will continue his minor league rehab with Triple-A Louisville with another inning on Friday. … LHP Sean Marshall, who has not pitched this season, had season-ending shoulder surgery Wednesday.
    
Royals: Backup C Erik Kratz (torn left planter fasciitis) will report Thursday to Triple-Omaha for a minor league rehab. … LHP Jason Vargas (flexor strain) will throw a simulated game Friday.
    
UP NEXT
    
Reds: RHP Mike Leake, who starts the series opener Friday at Cleveland, gave up a career-high nine runs and three homers in five innings in his previous start, Saturday at San Francisco.
    
Royals: RHP Chris Young has never beaten the Cardinals, his Friday opponent. He is 0-3 with a 3.65 ERA in five career starts against St. Louis.

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