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Cincinnati at Pittsburgh

Venue: PNC Park
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Billy Hamilton is on a tear, the Cincinnati Reds are surging and it's coming at the expense of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The speedy center fielder and the Reds look to continue their recent dominance of the Pirates and record the team's longest winning streak in Pittsburgh in over two decades Wednesday.

Hamilton is 11 for 19 with three doubles, two homers and six RBIs in the last four of a six-game road trip which ends Wednesday. He's a big reason why the Reds (35-35) have a .308 average while winning six of seven overall.

Brandon Phillips has four straight multihit games, Todd Frazier has three homers and nine RBIs in the last six and the Reds have a chance to go over .500 for the first time all season.

"Offensively, with the way we're swinging the bat right now," Devin Mesoraco told the team's official website, "with Billy really getting on base here in the past couple of games, Joey (Votto) and Jay Bruce back healthy, Brandon doing his thing, Todd Frazier really swinging it, I think we can really string some wins together."

They've won seven of eight on the road and against the Pirates (34-37), including five straight at PNC Park after a seven-run third inning led to an 11-4 victory Wednesday. Cincinnati hasn't won six in a row in Pittsburgh since 1992-93 and hasn't done it in a single season since 1986.

Hamilton has three hits in each of the first two games of this series, stealing three bases in Tuesday's 6-5 win and driving in three runs Wednesday. He's hitting .433 with eight steals and eight runs in eight career games at Pittsburgh.

Homer Bailey (7-3, 4.68 ERA) hasn't done as well against the Pirates lately. He's 0-3 with a 5.14 ERA in five matchups since tossing the first of his two career no-hitters Sept. 28, 2012, at Pittsburgh. The right-hander was tagged for a career-high four homers while giving up five runs in five innings and not getting a decision in an 8-7 home loss to the Pirates on April 14.

Despite his recent struggles against them, Bailey is 5-1 with a 1.60 ERA in seven career starts at Pittsburgh with three complete games.

He enters this meeting with a 4-0 record and 3.51 ERA in his last five starts overall. Bailey was headed for a fifth straight win Friday, allowing one run through six innings before giving up three more and leaving with one out in the seventh while not getting a decision in a 6-5 victory over Milwaukee.

The Pirates are trying to snap a three-game slide, and are again turning to Jeff Locke (0-1, 3.98) in place of injured right-hander Gerrit Cole (shoulder). Locke has been impressive in two starts since returning from the minors but has an 0-1 record thanks to his teammates.

The bullpen let Locke down in Friday's 8-6, 13-inning defeat at Miami, where he allowed two runs in a career-high eight innings. Five days earlier, the offense didn't help as he gave up a run in seven innings of a 1-0 loss to Milwaukee.

Locke, who went 2-6 with a 5.56 ERA in 15 starts last year after making the NL All-Star team, felt encouraged by his latest performance.

"It's huge," Locke said. "Anytime you give this team a chance to win, it makes you feel good. That's what I've always tried to do through the struggles and the successes. It builds a lot of confidence moving forward."

He had been 2-0 with a 1.19 ERA in four career starts against the Reds before getting hammered the last time he faced them. Locke was pulled after giving up five runs in the first inning of an 11-3 home loss Sept. 22.

Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Probable Starters

H. Bailey
Cincinnati 2014 stats Pittsburgh
2-0 Wins-Losses 0-1
20.1 Innings Pitched 20.1
3.54 Earned Run Average 3.98
7 Walks 1
20 Strikeouts 17
1.18 WHIP 0.93

J. Locke
Probable Pitchers
Standings
TeamStandingsWLPct.GBL 10Strk
Cincinnati5th NL Central5376.41130 ½ 2-8 L 1
Pittsburgh2nd NL Central7950.6124 ½ 7-3 L 1
 
 

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Injuries
Cincinnati
PlayerInjury
N. AdcockArm
H. BaileyElbow
B. BoeschAnkle
Z. CozartKnee
B. HamiltonShoulder
S. MarshallShoulder
D. MesoracoHip
J. MoscotShoulder
Pittsburgh
PlayerInjury
A. BurnettElbow
B. CumptonElbow
C. HartShoulder
G. HernandezShoulder
T. IshikawaBack
A. LamboFoot
R. ScahillForearm
J. SellersAchilles
 
Series Game Log
DateatResult/TimeWinnerLoser
Apr 10MILPIT 6-2Locke Fiers 
Apr 11MILMIL 6-0Nelson Worley 
Apr 12MILPIT 10-2Sadler Lohse 
Apr 17PITPIT 6-3Worley Nelson 
Apr 18PITPIT 6-2Locke Lohse 
Apr 19PITPIT 5-2Cole Garza 
Jun 8PITMIL 2-0Nelson Burnett 
Jun 9PITMIL 4-1Jungmann Liriano 
Jun 10PITPIT 2-0Morton Lohse 
Jul 17MILMIL 4-1Fiers Morton 
Jul 18MILMIL 8-5Nelson Worley 
Jul 19MILMIL 6-1Jungmann Locke 
Sep 1MIL 8:10 PM EDT  
Sep 2MIL 8:10 PM EDT  
Sep 3MIL 7:20 PM EDT  
Sep 10PIT 7:05 PM EDT  
Sep 11PIT 7:05 PM EDT  
Sep 12PIT 7:05 PM EDT  
Sep 13PIT 1:35 PM EDT