The Associated Press
CINCINNATI - Bees swarmed home plate. A rookie hit two homers. A third baseman wound up pitching. Reds batters got plunked at a record rate in a lopsided win.
Bruce Bochy sure has some memories from his final game at Great American Ball Park.
Nick Senzel hit a leadoff homer after a swarm of bees finally left home plate, and the rookie connected again his next time up Monday, leading Cincinnati to a 12-4 victory over the San Francisco Giants that was strewn with far more oddities than just an insect infestation.
"Whew," the Giants manager said, rubbing both eyes with his fists.
The wild game included a record-tying four Reds getting plunked in one inning. Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval pitched the eighth and also hit a batter, matching another record.
By that time, Bochy wasn't the only one with tired eyes.
The first pitch was delayed 18 minutes as bees swarmed above the backstop screen, prompting umpires and players to keep a safe distance.
"I've never seen that," Senzel said. "That was crazy. I didn't know what was going on at first. Then I saw the swarm."
It was the Giants' second bee delay in Cincinnati. Their game at Riverfront Stadium on April 17, 1976, was held up for 35 minutes when bees invaded the visiting dugout.
Another game at Riverfront - this one against the Phillies - was delayed for 17 minutes in 1987, with Reds starter Ted Power getting stung on his hand.
Senzel was a focus of a series between the NL's two least-productive offenses. The second overall pick in the 2016 amateur draft was called up to help spark an offense batting .207, worst in the majors.
He connected on the second pitch by Drew Pomeranz (1-4) and homered again in the second inning for a 6-0 lead. Senzel went 4 for 17 in the series with three solo homers. He is the first Reds rookie to hit three homers in his first four games.
"I honestly don't feel like it's going well," said Senzel, who also struck out three times and hit into a double play. "I'm still getting to where I want to be. There's a lot of room for growth."
Pomeranz lasted only 1 2/3 innings and gave up seven runs for the first time since 2014. Jose Iglesias had a single, double and triple and drove in four runs.
"Just one of those days," Pomeranz said. "A lot of runs scored this whole series, a lot of balls flying out, a lot of balls dropping in."
Giants starters gave up 27 runs in the four-game series, leaving the bullpen depleted. Bochy had to go longer with some of his relievers Monday, and the strain showed.
Four Reds were hit by pitches during the sixth inning - two with the bases loaded - to tie the major league record for an inning set in 1893. Pat Venditte hit three of them.
When Sandoval made his second career pitching appearance and plunked Jose Peraza in the eighth inning, it tied the NL record and set a Reds' modern record of five batters hit in a game.
Anthony DeSclafani (2-1) gave up four runs, including Sandoval's three-run homer, in six innings.
The Reds hit 15 homers during the series, tying the club record for a series. They also hit 15 during a three-game series against the Phillies in 1999 that included a nine-homer, 22-3 win.
Oh the memories
Bochy also witnessed another odd moment in the ballpark's history. A home run smokestack in the outfield caught fire during a game in 2016, prompting the evacuation of fans in two sections. Bochy is retiring after the season. The Reds honored him on the field pregame, before the bees moved in.
The series split left the two last-place teams with matching 15-20 records.
Out in left field
Reds manager David Bell decided to start middle infielder Jose Peraza in left field for the first time this season. Peraza had started in left field eight other times in his career.
Giants: Evan Longoria got another day to rest his sore shoulder. He has missed the last three games.
Reds: Scooter Gennett is not able to jog yet because of a groin injury suffered during spring training. Gennett is on the 60-day disabled list. There is no timetable for his return.
GIANTS 6, REDS 5: San Francisco's comeback from an 8-0 deficit Friday was historic.
This one wasn't as gaudy, but manager Bruce Bochy may have been even more impressed.
Brandon Crawford delivered a tiebreaking, pinch-hit homer in the ninth inning to help the Giants erase a four-run first-inning by Cincinnati to beat the Reds 6-5 Sunday.
"Today's might've been better because we were facing a tougher pitcher," San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's hard to say it was better than 8-0, but they battled snd battled and got it done."
Crawford's two-run shot lifted the Giants after Cincinnati homered on three straight pitches by starter Jeff Samardzija in the first.
Buster Posey hit a tying, three-run homer in the sixth and opened the ninth with a one-out double against Raisel Iglesias (1-5). Crawford followed with his first homer of the season and second career pinch-hit homer deep into the right field seats, lifting the Giants to their third win in four games.
"It was hard to see," Crawford said. "I was just trying to focus on seeing the ball and putting a good swing on it."
San Francisco overcame an eight-run deficit to beat Cincinnati 12-11 in 10 innings Friday night, but Posey leaned toward agreeing with his skipper, especially since the Giants came back against Luis Castillo, the reigning NL Pitcher of the Month.
"He was throwing a no-hitter until the sixth," Posey said. "He was tough - really tough. Being able to score four runs off him is a nice accomplishment."
Crawford's homer was the second ninth-inning blast allowed by Iglesias. Posey hit a tying homer Friday.
"The Giants are a good team and have been for a long time," Reds manager David Bell said. "We've seen Raisel really good, too. He's not happy with the results, but we still like where he is."
Tony Watson (1-0) pitched a perfect eighth to support the comeback. Will Smith worked around Kyle Farmer's first career pinch-hit homer with two outs to earn his ninth save in nine tries.
Eugenio Suarez, Jesse Winker and Derek Dietrich pounced on Samardzija to give the Reds a 4-0 first inning lead.
Suarez followed Joey Votto's leadoff bloop single to center with a drive that just cleared the fence down the right field line. Winker and Dietrich followed with first-pitch drives to right-center, Dietrich turning his entire body to stare into the Reds dugout as he danced up the first base line after his fourth home run in three games.
The home runs were each player's ninth of the season.
Samardzija regrouped and retired his last 13 batters. He allowed five hits and four runs with four strikeouts in five innings.
Castillo was dynamic through five innings, facing the minimum 15 batters and allowing no hits and one walk. The Giants reached him in the sixth for four runs.
"I didn't do anything different in the sixth inning," Castillo said. "I didn't know I was throwing a no-hitter. I don't think I missed with the pitch to Posey. It was a really good pitch. He put a good swing on it."
Castillo gave up four hits and four runs with two walks. He tied his season high with nine strikeouts.
REDS RELEASE KEMP: The Reds have released injured outfielder Matt Kemp just over four months after acquiring the 2018 All-Star from the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Cincinnati announced the move Saturday.
Kemp hit .200 with one homer and five RBIs before Cincinnati placed him on the injured list April 23 with a broken left rib. Kemp was injured colliding with an outfield wall in San Diego.
The 34-year-old was among four players acquired from Los Angeles in a seven-player trade in December along with outfielder Yasiel Puig, infielder Kyle Farmer and left-hander Alex Wood. Kemp is in the final season of a $160 million, eight-year contract.
The Reds also optioned OF Scott Schebler to Triple-A Louisville and recalled LHP Cody Reed from Louisville. Schebler was hitting .123 with two home runs and seven RBIs in 30 games and had lost his starting job to top prospect Nick Senzel, who made his major league debut Friday.