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CINCINNATI (AP) — Reds reliever Lucas Sims walked in a run to give the Arizona Diamondbacks a 5-4 lead over Cincinnati in the top of the eighth inning Tuesday night before the game was suspended because of rain.

Play was called just before the rain turned into snow at Great American Ball Park. It will resume before the teams play their regularly scheduled game on Wednesday night.

Pitching in a driving rain with one out in the eighth, Sims hit pinch-hitter Wyatt Mathisen with a pitch to load the bases and then walked Carson Kelly on a full count. Umpire Jerry Meals, the crew chief, then stopped the game.

Andrew Young, who entered as a defensive replacement in the seventh, led off the eighth with a homer to center field off Reds reliever Tejay Antone to tie it.

Kyle Farmer hit a two-run homer in the Reds sixth inning off reliever Yoan López, who was called on after starter Zac Gallen walked Tucker Barnhart with two outs.

Gallen pitched well, allowing three earned runs on four hits with six strikeouts through 5 2/3 innings.

Arizona scored three times in the first on three singles and an errant throw to second on a double-play ball by Reds second baseman Jonathan India.

It could have been worse for Cincinnati, with starter Luis Castillo working out of bases-loaded jams in the third and fourth before being relieved by José De León to start the fifth.

Pavin Smith had three hits for Arizona.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Diamondbacks: CF Ketel Marte (hamstring) and his replacement, Tim Locastro (jammed finger), are on the shelf with injuries. First baseman Christian Walker (strained oblique) also is still out. … Hitting coach Darnell Coles didn’t make the road trip after tearing his right Achilles tendon. He’s scheduled for surgery Friday.

Reds: 3B Mike Moustakas was put on the 10-day injured list retroactive to Saturday. He missed the entire weekend series against Cleveland with what manager David Bell said was a non-COVID-19 illness. … INF Alex Blandino was reinstated from the injured list.

UP NEXT

The suspended game will pick up in the top of the eighth inning Wednesday at 5:10 p.m. The originally scheduled game will be a regulation nine-inning game and start no earlier than 6:40 p.m.

The Reds planned to send right-hander Tyler Mahle (1-1) to the mound to face Diamondbacks right-hander Merrill Kelly (1-2) in the nightcap. Kelly earned a win despite allowing six runs on nine hits in six innings against the Nationals on Thursday. He’s allowed 23 hits and 15 earned runs in 16 innings this season. Mahle yielded two runs on three hits and struck out seven in a loss to the Giants on Wednesday.

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Inflation Hits a 13-Year High Is Stagflation Around the Corner?

Eric Nanneman, The Western Journal May 13, 2021 0 Comments

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Wednesday that the consumer price index surged 0.8 percent in April to clock in at a whopping 4.2 percent inflation rate for the year, the highest since 2008.

The Federal Reserve sets the acceptable inflation target at 2 percent — a mark it has met for more than a decade.

The report landed on the heels of massive back-to-back drops in the stock market. The Dow, Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 all lost 3 to 3.5 percent in the past two days, erasing all of their gains for the past six weeks. The Dow, in particular, had its worst day since January on Wednesday.

CNBC reported that prior to the release, Dow Jones canvassed economists who expected inflation to reach 3.6 percent.

Used Car Prices Drive Back to the Eisenhower Administration

The largest increase the report highlighted was a massive surge in used car prices: 10 percent, the highest one-month increase since 1953.

A lot of this demand is due to far fewer new cars being manufactured following a shortage of computer chips from Asia. German semiconductor company Infineon estimates that a lack of microchips may result in 2.5 million fewer cars produced worldwide during the first half of the year.

Ford also announced that it would slash the number of vehicles it planned to produce this year in half — to 1.1 million units — due to the chip shortage.

Inflation Touches Nearly Every Industry

The BLS also reported that “[n]early all major component indexes increased in April.” Taking food and energy out of the mix, the CPI rose 0.9 percent — its largest monthly increase in nearly 40 years.

Practically every aspect of the economy saw a rise, including motor vehicle insurance, housing, airline fares, recreation and household furnishings. Gasoline, which rose a whopping 9.1 percent in March, now costs 50 percent more than this time last year.

The report does not include the effects of the recent Colonial Pipeline attack that shut down gas deliveries for much of the East Coast. That will have to wait for the May report.

Going Back to the 1970s – Malaise, Stagflation and the Misery Index

Some analysts compare our current economic environment to that of the 1970s and point out that we could be entering a period of stagflation.

Stagflation marks a period of rising prices and slow economic growth that just needs three simple ingredients: high unemployment, high inflation and a low GDP. The U.S. already has the high inflation, and the BLS reported that the unemployment rate rose to 6.1 percent in April. Prior to the pandemic, it consistently remained below 4 percent.

What about economic growth? The GDP certainly had quite a whipsaw last year, falling and rising more than 25 percent as the country shut down then reopened, but it grew 6.4 percent during the first quarter of 2021. The previous five years saw growth ranging from 1.7 to 3.1 percent, according to The Balance.

But how much of that increase was fueled by government spending?

According to the Congressional Budget Office, government spending comprised a whopping 31 percent of GDP during fiscal year 2020 — far, far higher than the 20.4 percent average of the past 50 years.

Last spring, the government pumped $3 trillion into the economy, followed by $900 billion in December and a further $1.9 trillion in March. And now Biden is trying to sell a $2.3 trillion infrastructure and jobs plan. That totals $8.1 trillion.

In 2020, the IRS collected $3.42 trillion in revenue. The U.S. national debt now stands at $28 trillion.

It seems pretty clear that this level of spending is not sustainable, and neither is the economic growth. The U.S. stands on the cusp of entering a period not seen in more than 40 years, a period defined by another term: the Misery Index.

In the 1970s, Brookings economist Arthur Okun took the unemployment rate, added the inflation rate to it and created the Misery Index. Following the 1973 oil embargo, the index ranged between 13 and 20 percent throughout the 1970s.

In 2019, it was 5.4 percent, but the Misery Index today would be 10.3 percent.

Economist Nouriel Roubini of New York University’s Stern School of Business last month sounded the alarm on stagflation.

“Make no mistake: inflation’s return would have severe economic and financial consequences. We would have gone from the ‘Great Moderation’ to a new period of macro instability,” Roubini said.

“The secular bull market in bonds would finally end, and rising nominal and real bond yields would make today’s debts unsustainable, crashing global equity markets. In due time, we could even witness the return of 1970s-style malaise.”

If we are returning to a 1970s-style malaise, one thing is certain: My sideburns are far too short.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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