Dusty Baker has spent much of Cincinnati's current homestand, which ends Thursday, talking about his team's fatigue.
The Reds never looked more lethargic than they did Wednesday night in their 3-1 loss to Arizona. Diamondbacks right-hander Ian Kennedy, who limited the Reds to six hits and one run in eight innings of a 13-2 win at Arizona on April 8, was sharp again. He allowed just one baserunner and held Cincinnati hitless until reigning National League Most Valuable Player Joey Votto singled to left-center field with one out in the fourth inning.
Baker believes the Reds never recovered from having to make a long trip out West to start the season. Cincinnati, which trains in Arizona, spent eight days at home before heading back to Arizona and then on San Diego. Even with a day off before starting the current seven-game homestand, the Reds won just one of the first six, dropping three out of four to Pittsburgh and the first two against Arizona.
The Reds, the league's top offensive team last season, have accumulated a combined nine hits in the first two games against the Diamondbacks.
That left them facing a day game Thursday after Wednesday's night game, then a six-game road trip to St. Louis and Milwaukee, the top two challengers to their NL Central Division championship.
"Losing takes a lot out of you," Baker said. "You get much more tired losing than you ever do winning. I told my wife I felt like I hadn't slept in a week, and she said, 'There's a good chance your players feel the same way.'
"It's amazing how good you sleep when you win -- when you get some hits or pitch a good game."
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