Surging Reds ride early outburst to win
The Associated Press | August 03,2012
CINCINNATI — Todd Frazier hit a two-run homer and Johnny Cueto overcame a pair of rare long balls to pitch into the eighth inning Thursday and lead the surging Cincinnati Reds to their 13th win in 14 games, 9-4 over the San Diego Padres.
Scott Rolen had three hits, Frazier had three RBIs and Jay Bruce drove in two runs, helping push the Reds to 23 games over .500 (64-41) for the first time since Sept. 4, 2010.
The Reds took three of four from San Diego and have won 20 of 23. They are 14-3 since All-Star first baseman Joey Votto left the lineup with a knee injury that required surgery and have won two straight since star second baseman Brandon Phillips was sidelined with a strained left calf.
Cueto (14-5), who gave up home runs for the first time in more than two months, allowed eight hits and four runs with one walk and nine strikeouts in 7 1-3 innings.
Cincinnati opened a 3½ game lead over idle Pittsburgh in the NL Central heading into a three-game weekend series between the two teams that is scheduled to start Friday.
San Diego catcher Eddy Rodriguez enjoyed a memorable major league debut, hitting a home run in his first plate appearance.
The Reds chased Padres starter Ross Ohlendorf while sending 12 batters to the plate during a six-hit, six-run second inning. Rolen started it with an infield hit. Frazier followed with his 13th homer and second in three games, a 408-foot drive into the left field seats.
Ryan Hanigan added an RBI double and Bruce had a bases-loaded, two-run single. Ohlendorf (3-2) also was called for a run-scoring balk before leaving after just 1 2-3 innings, the shortest outing by a San Diego starter this season.
Rodriguez, a former Reds minor leaguer who also has played in independent leagues, smacked a 1-2 pitch 416 feet into the left field seats for the first home run allowed by Cueto in 80 innings — the longest stretch in the majors this season — over 11 starts since Colorado’s Todd Helton homered on May 25 in Cincinnati. The homer was the first by a right-hander allowed by Cueto since Washington’s Ryan Zimmerman hit one on Aug. 17, 2011, a span of 169 innings.
Mets 9, Giants 1
SAN FRANCISCO — Ronny Cedeno drove in five runs to match his career high, Jason Bay had only his second multi-RBI game this year and the New York Mets beat San Francisco 9-1 Thursday to take three of four from the Giants and win their first series in a month.
Bay had three RBIs as Mets won for the fourth time in five games following a 2-14 slide. His only other multi-RBI game was April 13, when he hit a two-run homer against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Chris Young (3-5) allowed one run and four hits in seven innings, struck out four and walked none. He had been 0-4 with a 6.00 ERA in five starts since winning at the Los Angeles Dodgers on June 28.
Hunter Pence had a fourth-inning sacrifice fly for San Francisco, which has lost seven of eight since opening a three-game NL lead over the Dodgers on July 25. Melky Cabrera was a home run shy of a cycle.