After a miserable opening month, the Cincinnati Reds will look to continue their sudden good fortune when they host the Milwaukee Brewers in the second game of a three-game series on Tuesday night.
Cincinnati has won two games in a row for the first time this year and has won three of the past four after a 1-20 stretch.
The Reds got three-run homers from Brandon Drury and Kyle Farmer on Monday night while posting a 10-5 win over the Brewers. Colin Moran also went deep for the Reds, who reached double figures in scoring for the first time this season.
Cincinnati is trying to return the favor this week after the Brewers' Rowdy Tellez drove in eight runs in an 18-4 rout of Cincinnati on Wednesday, part of a week that earned Tellez the National League Player of the Week honors on Monday.
"My confidence is always pretty high, regardless of whether I'm doing good or not," said Tellez, who hit a two-run double on Monday. "I think the confidence, for me, comes not with numbers, but with consistent at-bats. The numbers are always going to keep you confident, but being able to get the numbers and the consistent, good at-bats.
"I think when you have a team that has that kind of confidence in you as a player, to be in the lineup every day, it breeds confidence in the individual as well."
The Brewers enter play Tuesday riding a season-high, three-game losing streak.
They will look to change their fortunes against Reds rookie right-hander Hunter Greene (1-4, 8.71 ERA), who will attempt to get back on track.
It's been a rough ride for the top player in Cincinnati's farm system since he won his major league debut at Atlanta on April 10. Greene has lost each of his subsequent four starts and has thrown fewer than five innings in each of the past three.
His first career appearance against the Brewers was the roughest of his young career. In taking a 10-5 loss on Thursday, Greene allowed five home runs, matching the club record by a pitcher in a game. Luis Urias and Christian Yelich opened the game with home runs, and things didn't get much better from there.
Greene was tagged for eight runs on nine hits while striking out seven and walking one over just 2 2/3 innings. Since throwing a major-league-record 39 pitches over 100 mph against the Los Angeles Dodgers in his second start, Greene is 0-3 with a 13.06 ERA, having allowed 15 runs in 10 1/3 innings.
The Brewers will counter with right-hander Freddy Peralta (1-1, 5.09 ERA), who will make his sixth start of the season and second straight against the Reds. On Wednesday, Peralta was the beneficiary of an offensive explosion in Milwaukee's 18-4 rout of Cincinnati.
He allowed three runs on five hits over five-plus innings, striking out seven and walking two. Peralta is 3-2 with a 3.70 ERA in 15 career games (nine starts) against the Reds.
Peralta and the Reds would love for Moran, who has three homers in the past two games, to produce another big night on Tuesday.
"The clubhouse is so happy for him," Cincinnati manager David Bell said. "(He's) just such a professional. He's handled everything so well. He started the season not playing a lot and he's just stayed ready. He's worked super hard, quiet. We know he can hit."
Moran has been filling in at first base for Joey Votto, who has been on the COVID injured list since May 3. On Monday, veteran infielder Mike Moustakas joined Votto and outfielder Nick Senzel in COVID protocol.
--Field Level Media