CINCINNATI -- Pitchers can load the bases with an intentional walk ahead of Scooter Gennett. The Reds second baseman doesn't mind one bit, seriously.Gennett has a year-plus of time logged with the Reds, and he's already zooming up the club's all-time list for grand slams. His hot stretch continued during
CINCINNATI -- Pitchers can load the bases with an intentional walk ahead of Scooter Gennett. The Reds second baseman doesn't mind one bit, seriously.
Gennett has a year-plus of time logged with the Reds, and he's already zooming up the club's all-time list for grand slams. His hot stretch continued during Tuesday's 7-2 win over the Pirates when he drove in six runs, including a fifth-inning grand slam that turned a 2-1 Cincinnati advantage into a 6-1 lead.
"Just being aggressive in that situation is the play for me," Gennett said. "They're not trying to walk you. They're going to throw the crazy curveballs in the dirt and let it run in. I think being aggressive and looking for a good pitch to hit is the way to go. It worked out today."
• Grand slams mean 40% off pizza
Following a one-out single by Jose Peraza and a double from Tucker Barnhart, Pittsburgh's Jameson Taillon intentionally walked Joey Votto with one out in the bottom of the fifth.
Gennett wasn't offended that the Pirates wanted to face him instead.
"It definitely makes sense for why they did. Joey is, in my opinion, the best hitter in the game, so I definitely didn't take it personally or anything like that," Gennett said. "In that situation, I like getting up there with the bases loaded."
On a first-pitch changeup from Taillon, Gennett slugged a drive high into the right-field seats for the grand slam.
It was the sixth of his career and his fifth for the club in just under a calendar year. He is tied for seventh on the club's all-time list for grand slams.
Gennett, who also hit an RBI double in the first inning for Cincinnati's first run of the game and a sac fly in the seventh, notched his highest RBI total in one game since his four-homer, 10 RBI performance on June 6, 2017, vs. the Cardinals.
"It was just a huge hit," Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said of Gennett's slam. "He's got a lot of big hits for us. That's why we want him there hitting behind Joey, for that reason right there."
In 47 games this season, Gennett is batting .329/.358/.528 with eight homers and 33 RBIs. Over his past 14 games, he is batting .411 (23-for-56) with six homers and 19 RBIs. Following a breakout '17 season, he's shown no signs of regression.
"It's just baseball. There's ups and downs," Gennett said. "I could go in there and look at video of the times I don't do good or strikeout. But lately, I've been looking at the times I do good, just trying to feed myself positive thoughts and vibes. This is a game of failure. For me lately, I've looked at the stuff when I am doing good. It seems to help. I will stick to that."
Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.