It's not often that a player can pitch brilliantly, take a no-hitter into the seventh, and still be overshadowed by a position player in a 2-1 game, but somehow that happened Friday as the Bucs beat the Reds.
Edinson Volquez and Mike Leake traded zeroes as the early innings zoomed by. Volquez piled up strikeouts, getting one after another on balls in the dirt. He ended up with six while walking three, and he didn't allow a hit until Devin Mesoraco led off the seventh with a single. But whatever. Let's just start with Josh Harrison's smooth diving stop in the fourth to keep the no-hitter going, because ... get ready for Josh Harrison in this game.
Volquez put two runners on the seventh, but Harrison bailed him out with a terrific diving third-to-first double play. In the eighth, though, Billy Hamilton singled and stole second, then came home after Brandon Phillips got hit by a pitch and Mesoraco singled off Tony Watson. Starling Marte struggled to field the ball as it dropped in left center, and Jordy Mercer let Marte's throw get by him. Harrison got to it and threw home in time for Russell Martin to tag Phillips, however, and the Reds ended up with just one run.
So: 1-0, Reds. In the bottom of the inning, though, Andrew Lambo made his first plate appearance of the season and hit an infield single. And then up came Harrison, who tripled off the Clemente Wall to tie the game. Harrison then broke the tie on Jose Tabata's single.
Mark Melancon then grabbed the save with a 1-2-3 ninth, and Harrison even managed to get his hands on that, making a nice play on a line drive for the second out. Volquez was great, but forget that -- as with so many games we've seen this year, this one was all about Josh Harrison, who made one terrific defensive play after another and, as he seems to do again and again, got the biggest hit at exactly the right time. The PNC Park crowd chanted "M! V! P!" for him. He isn't the MVP, but some nights, it's awfully hard to tell.