This Saturday finds us at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Reds (who have a shot at clinching the NL West before Labor Day) are playing the Philadelphia Phillies, who are 6 1/2 games behind the surprising New York Mets in the NL East. Jim Lonborg (11-8) will be the starting pitcher for the Phillies. He will be opposed by Jack Billingham (13-3).
The Reds started the scoring in the bottom of the second inning. Johnny Bench tripled to right field. After Tony Perez grounded out, Cesar Geronimo pulled a double down the right field line to score Bench. Reds 1, Phillies 0.
The Phillies struck back in the top of the third when Dave Cash hit his first home run of the season. Reds 1, Phillies 1.
In the top of the fourth Mike Schmidt singled with one out. Schmidt advanced to second on a wild pitch and then scored on a triple by Jay Johnstone. Bob Boone singled Johnstone in to make the score 3-1. Phillies 3, Reds 1.
The Reds were able to tie the score in the bottom of the sixth inning. George Foster led off the inning with a walk. After Bench flew out, Foster went to third on a double by Perez. Geronimo singled, scoring Foster and advancing Perez to third. Dave Concepcion struck out, then pinch-hitter Dan Driessen singled to right to score Perez and tie the score. Phillies 3, Reds 3
In the top of the seventh Tim McCarver batted for Lonborg and drew a walk. Cash singled McCarver to second. Jerry Martin was sent in as a pinch runner for McCarver. Bowa flew out and Garry Maddox hit into a force play. Schmidt walked to load the bases. Johnstone then doubled to deep center to score Martin and Maddox. Schmidt was thrown out at the plate to end the inning. Phillies 5, Reds 3
Tug McGraw entered the game in the bottom of the seventh to face the left-handed Ken Griffey and Joe Morgan. Griffey singled and Morgan walked. Griffey scored on a single by Foster. Bench then walked to load the bases but McGraw was able to get the next two batters out and escape further damage. Phillies 5, Reds 4.
Ron Reed replaced McGraw in the eighth inning and pitched two scoreless innings to earn the save.
Lonborg (12-8) was the winning pitcher and Pedro Borbon (12-7) took the loss.