I would imagine that when Cincinnati Reds OF Jay Bruce woke up on Tuesday morning, he had no idea how special of a day it would be.
With the game tied at two in the bottom of the ninth inning, Bruce took the first pitch he saw from Houston Astros reliever Tim Byrdak and launched it over the center field fence to give the Reds a 3-2 win, but more importantly send the Reds to the playoffs.
The Reds clinched the National League Central title with the win and their first playoff appearance in 15 years.
Bruce, with his walk-off HR, joins Steve Finley, Alfonso Soriano, Hank Aaron, and Bobby Thomson as the only players to clinch a playoff berth for their team in such fashion. I watched the Bruce HR as it happened, and it was a really cool moment. The best part about the HR was that he knew it as soon as he hit it.
Now that the Reds are headed to the postseason, it’s time to answer some questions. I am going to venture to say that the Reds have more questions to answer than any other team that will be or may be participating in baseball’s postseason tournament.
Do they go with Homer Bailey, who has a 3.71 ERA in the second half? Do they do with Travis Wood, or do they go with Edinson Volquez? Mike Leake is not an option anymore, as he was shut down for the remainder of the season.
I would say they would most likely go with Bailey in Game 3.
I’ll attempt to answer all of these questions during my postseason preview on Monday.
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