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Cincinnati Reds defeated Arizona Diamondbacks 6-2 behind Hunter Greene

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PHOENIX – If the Cincinnati Reds want to feel how deeply the May mud affects all their big plans for this season, they can stare at the next three series on the schedule, when they get a face full of Shohei Ohtani and the many other dollar Dodgers for seven of the ten games.

But if they want a quick look at how six-month baseball seasons and MLB postseasons work, they can gaze across the field in Arizona before heading to Los Angeles.

And maybe find at least one example of why their most miserable stretch of baseball in two years might last just three weeks in an era of expanded playoffs and 84-win playoff teams.

“That’s it. It’s clearly not just the Reds, right?” Arizona Diamondbacks star Corbin Carroll said: “Most teams are going to face some tension — maybe not exactly 11 of 12 — but something similar.

“I think as a team we just saw the light at the end of the tunnel (last year). We knew we would get through it.”

The Diamondbacks were in first place and had 16 games above .500 when they opened July last year, before falling back in mid-August to fall 13 games back and under .500.

Of course, they ended up in the World Series.

A lesson in perseverance and patience for the Reds?

Maybe. Also, another lesson on Tuesday night: Starting pitching can solve a lot of problems for a team – as Hunter Williams showed with seven strong innings to underline the Reds’ early success, beating the Diamondbacks 6-2 on Tuesday night.

It was only the second win in 13 games for the Reds, who scored six points for the first time in 15 games.

That one match was more of an oasis in the desert than a clear sign of anything close to a turning point for the season, especially a day after leader TJ Friedl was lost from the list for the second time in two months with injured people.

“I’ve been to seven World Series,” said Dave McKay, a veteran Diamondbacks coach who spent decades with manager Tony La Russa in Oakland and St. Louis. “We lost three of them and had no business to lose. Three times we won, we had nothing to win.

“So you want to get there. When you get there, anything can happen.”