“I’m happy for us, too,” Showalter said. “That’s a really good club over there. I said before, they won the National League Central in a tough division. MVP, three Gold Glove guys, a great manager. That was a battle. And I think everybody feels good for Derrek because of the way he handles things. You look at this track record, you know things that he’s used to having happen. Everything he does is about trying to help the club. That’s where some of the emotion I think for everybody comes in when he has a big swing like that.”
Showalter didn’t call for a bunt with Nick Markakis batting and J.J. Hardy standing on second base with no outs in the 11th. Hardy held on Markakis’ grounder to third.
“Think about it? Sure, it crossed my mind, but that’s a very unusual at-bat for Nicky,” Showalter said. “Usually, he’s going to hook that ball or drive the run in. The problem there is, with (Brandon) Phillips so good and (Joey) Votto playing so tight, you still may not get over with a ground ball to the right side, but I still like our chances there with Nick. I think you saw a rare at-bat from him there in that situation.”
It’s too soon for Showalter to announce whether Chris Jakubauskas will make another start. Jakubauskas allowed three runs and five hits in five innings, with three walks and three strikeouts, to leave his ERA at 5.18.
“Jak is doing what he does,” Showalter said. “He’s a guy that’s got no ego. ‘What do you need? Here it is.’ He’s a guy who understands the reality of pitching.”
Showalter gave Blake Davis another start at second base, and the rookie responded with his first major league hit - a two-run triple.
“He gets an opportunity, he’s got to take advantage of it,” Showalter said. “But he did some good things over there, too, from the game that he played (in Pittsburgh). He did some good things in Norfolk to warrant the opportunity to come up here. So I try to keep all that in mind. He didn’t let much pass there.
“That was a good night for him. I know he’ll go home and sleep a little better than he did. That was probably a long off-day for him.”