Day 1, Cincinnati.

Finally.

That’s the first thing I’ll say. I can’t believe it’s finally here.

The baseball trip I’ve envisioned since 2015 and had planned since January? I’m finally on it.

The #MidwestBaseballFest. The first recap blog. Let’s just call it that for now.

I may be in the backseat of a car writing this, but that’s okay with me. We’re one game down, and have seven games to go. So here’s a quick recap of today.

Today’s game was actually a late addition to the trip. We originally were not planning to go to Cincinnati, but when I realized the Reds would be home and it was possible we could make the game at a good time, I suggested it to the guys.

I mainly suggested it because Andy had yet to see a game at GABP. I’ve been plenty of times before, but I’m always down to visit a nice ballpark like the one in Cincinnati and help a friend check a ballpark off their list.Gary and Kyle both signed on with the idea, and after I got off work, we hit the road for the Queens City.

It was a hot one in Cincinnati, but we had shade all game.

This was a game that was very much run of the mill until about the bottom of the 7th inning. The Brewers held a 3-2 lead and turned the game over to their normally sturdy bullpen, looking to take a third straight game from the Reds.

That’s when things went south quickly for the Brew Crew. Before an out was made, the Reds had plated four and taken a 6-3 lead.

The bases were still loaded with nobody out when relief pitcher Michael Lorenzen stepped in to pinch hit for fellow pitcher David Hernandez. The unbelievable happened next.

GRAND SLAM! Yes, a grand slam by a pitcher! The second by a Reds pitcher in a week, incredibly enough. It’s the first time since 1973 a team (Cardinals) has had two grand slams come from pitchers in a season.

Then we also got to see Erik Kratz, the Brewers starting catcher, pitch the 8th inning. My second time in a month seeing a position player pitch. I saw Brandon Guyer pitch for the Indians in Cleveland back on June 16.

I have to say, just seeing a pitcher hit a grand slam made up for Ryan Braun, Lorenzo Cain, and Christian Yelich all not playing for Milwaukee.

Final score: Reds 12, Brewers 3.

Oh yeah, the Fry Box was delicious, by the way.

Get in my belly

St. Louis is our next stop. We are currently driving to Effingham, Illinois (we’ve enjoyed the puns too much probably), to spend the night. It’s been a long day, but we will be grateful when our drive to St. Louis tomorrow morning is only an hour and a half long.

Until next week, eastern time zone. The Midwest Baseball Fest is officially in full swing.

-Evan Lewis