Logan Allen held the Reds scoreless for six innings and the Guardians’ bullpen took care of the rest as Cleveland pitched a 3-0 shutout over Cincinnati to take a 1-0 lead in the Battle of Ohio.
The Guardians did most of their scoring in the first inning against Cincinnati starter Graham Ashcraft. After Steven Kwan reached on a leadoff single, Jose Ramirez — penciled into the No. 2 spot in the lineup — lined an opposite field double to left field, thanks in part to Spencer Steer being blinded by the sun. With one out and runners on second and third, Kole Calhoun dropped a two-run single into left field, opening up a 2-0 lead for Cleveland.
Can do, Calhoun!— Bally Sports Cleveland (@BallySportsCLE) August 15, 2023
Kole Calhoun comes through with a two-run single in the top of the first inning to give the @CleGuardians a 2-0 lead over the @Reds in Cincinnati.#ForTheLand | #OhioCup pic.twitter.com/agnV6rRJPF
The only other run the Guardians scored came in the seventh inning. Myles Straw singled, stole second base, and scored on a Kwan single that right fielder T.J. Hopkins misplayed.
Three runs was all the support Allen would need. He was terrific, limiting the Reds to four hits and three walks over six shutout innings. Cincinnati didn’t have a baserunner reach second base until the fourth inning, after a two-out single by Christian Betancourt-Strand put runners on first and second. But then Allen struck out Stuart Fairchild to end the threat.
In the sixth, Allen’s final inning of work, Matt McLain drew a leadoff walk and Elly De La Cruz reached on an infield single. Steer proceeded to fly out to right field and both McLain and De La Cruz decided to tag up on the play. The latter’s decision proved ill-advised, as Will Brennan made a perfect throw to second base to tag De La Cruz and turn a double play. Allen struck out Henry Ramos to leave McLain stranded at third and add an exclamation point to his outstanding outing.
Enyel De Los Santos, Trevor Stephan, and Emmanuel Clase finished off the shutout.