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Bay helps Pirates beat Reds, end skid at five

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Jason Bay figured he still knew how to hit home runs.

The NL rookie of the year hit his first of the season and drove in two runs Thursday as the Pittsburgh Pirates stopped a five-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over the Cincinnati Reds.

"We were in desperate need of a win," Pittsburgh manager Lloyd McClendon said. "Hopefully, we can get on a roll. I told the guys to keep on fighting."

Bay had three hits, finishing a triple short of the cycle, and his solo homer in the fifth to center field off Eric Milton (2-2) was his first since Sept. 29.

"I wasn't trying to do it, but it's good to know I still can," said Bay, who hit 26 homers last season, when he became the first Pittsburgh player to win the rookie award.

Kip Wells (1-3), pitching on his 28th birthday, won for the first time in six starts since Aug. 7 at San Diego, allowing two runs, three hits and five walks in five innings.

"It wasn't a real good outing, but the last three or four have gotten progressively better," Wells said. "I didn't feel like I pitched well, but I made pitches when I had to."

Wells, 3-0 in his career when pitching on his birthday, avoided what would have been the first 0-4 start of his career.

"I thought his stuff was tremendous," McClendon said. "He just threw too many pitches."

Jose Mesa pitched the ninth for his fifth save in five chances, giving up a two-out double to pinch-hitter Jacob Cruz and a walk to Ryan Freel before retiring Ken Griffey Jr. on a ground ball to second base. Griffey went 0-for-3 with two walks and is homerless in 46 at-bats this year. His previous high at the start of the season was 44 in 1991.

"I was hoping for his first one right there," said Cincinnati manager Dave Miley, who watched his team continue to struggle with runners in scoring position. The Reds were 0-for-7, and are hitting .096 (5-for-52) with runners in scoring position in their seven losses. They are hitting .349 (22-for-63) with runners in scoring position in their eight wins.

"It was just one of those days," Griffey said. "We couldn't get the big hit."

The start of the game was delayed 12 minutes by rain and play started under cloudy skies with a temperature of 52 degrees. Milton (2-2) struggled with the weather, giving up three runs and five hits in five innings.

"It was tough to get a feel out there," he said. "I tried everything. I licked my fingers and blew on my hand, but I couldn't spot the ball. When you don't have velocity and you can't spot the ball, that's a deadly combination. It just felt like I was throwing a cue ball. Their guy did a better job of pitching in the elements.

Wily Mo Pena put Cincinnati ahead with an RBI double in the first, extending his hitting streak to a career-best six games.

Pittsburgh, just 5-11 this year, went ahead for good in the third when Matt Lawton was hit by a pitch, Bay doubled off the right-field wall, Craig Wilson hit an RBI single and Ty Wigginton had a run-scoring grounder.

A run-scoring wild pitch after Freel's leadoff double in the bottom half pulled Cincinnati to 3-2. David Ross drove in a run with a squeeze bunt in the fifth after Adam Dunn dropped Freddy Sanchez's fly ball to left for a three-base error.

"We did a good job of taking advantage of their mistakes," Bay said. "We only had six hits, but we've had games where we had 13 and didn't score enough runs. It was good to finally get a lead and hold on to it."

Notes

  • Lawton did not lead off for the first time this season. He extended his streak of consecutive games reaching base to 12 when he was hit by a pitch.
  • Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon used his 16th lineup in 16 games.
  • Slumping Pirates SS Jack Wilson batted leadoff for the first time this season, but went 0-for-4 to extend his hitless streak to 19 at-bats.
  • Reds 3B Joe Randa got the day off, his first of the season.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Pittsburgh

J. Bay
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
Pittsburgh

K. Wells
IP 5.0
H 3
ER 2
BB 5
K 5
 

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Pittsburgh Pirates
Jack Wilson, SS4000003 .143
Matt Lawton, RF4100012 .292
Jason Bay, LF4231110 .277
Craig A. Wilson, 1B3011100 .255
    Mike Gonzalez, P0000000 .000
   a- Bobby Hill, PH1000013 .421
    Jose Mesa, P0000000 .000
Tike Redman, CF5000007 .156
Ty Wigginton, 3B4011000 .146
Freddy Sanchez, 2B3100102 .231
David Ross, C3001012 .250
Kip Wells, P2010000 .286
   b- Rob Mackowiak, PH0000100 .333
    John Grabow, P0000000 .000
    Brian Meadows, P0000000 .000
    Daryle Ward, 1B0000100 .231
Totals334645419 
a-struck out for Gonzalez in the 9th
b-walked for Wells in the 6th
Batting
2B - Jason Bay (4, Milton), Ty Wigginton (2, Weber)
HR - Jason Bay (1, Milton)
SH - Jack Wilson (1), David Ross (1)
RBI - Jason Bay (4), Craig A. Wilson (4), Ty Wigginton (2), David Ross (8)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - F. Sanchez-J. Wilson-C. Wilson, Gonzalez-J. Wilson-Ward
PB - David Ross (3)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Kip Wells (W,1-3) 5322550 6.46
John Grabow (H,3) 0.2200010 3.18
Brian Meadows (H,3) 0.2000000 11.05
Mike Gonzalez (H,3) 1.2000120 4.70
Jose Mesa (S,5) 1100110 1.80
IBB - Dunn by Kip Wells
WP - Kip Wells (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Kip Wells 104-59, John Grabow 17-11, Brian Meadows 7-5, Mike Gonzalez 24-16, Jose Mesa 18-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kip Wells 5-4, John Grabow 1-0, Brian Meadows 2-0, Mike Gonzalez 2-0, Jose Mesa 1-1
Batters Faced - Kip Wells 22, John Grabow 4, Brian Meadows 2, Mike Gonzalez 5, Jose Mesa 5
Cincinnati Reds
Ryan Freel, 3B4110100 .333
Ken Griffey Jr., CF3000202 .239
Sean Casey, 1B3110102 .255
Wily Mo Pena, RF3011110 .351
Adam Dunn, LF2010200 .283
D'Angelo Jimenez, 2B4010025 .220
Jason LaRue, C4000032 .256
Felipe Lopez, SS4000021 .211
Eric Milton, P2000010 .000
    David Weathers, P0000000 .000
   a- Austin Kearns, PH1000002 .216
    Ben Weber, P0000000 .000
    Kent Mercker, P0000000 .000
   b- Jacob Cruz, PH1010000 .250
Totals312617914 
a-hit into fielder's choice for Weathers in the 6th
b-doubled for Mercker in the 9th
Batting
2B - Ryan Freel (3, Wells), Sean Casey (2, Wells), Wily Mo Pena (6, Wells), Jacob Cruz (1, Mesa)
RBI - Wily Mo Pena (11)
2-OUT RBI - Wily Mo Pena (4)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Adam Dunn (2, Dropped fly), Kent Mercker (1, Wild throw)
Cincinnati Reds
Eric Milton (L,2-2) 5533211 4.98
David Weathers 1010100 7.88
Ben Weber 2100020 5.87
Kent Mercker 1000210 2.35
IBB - Bay by Kent Mercker
HBP - Lawton (by Eric Milton)
WP - Eric Milton 2 (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Eric Milton 96-62, David Weathers 19-11, Ben Weber 36-24, Kent Mercker 22-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Eric Milton 5-9, David Weathers 2-2, Ben Weber 4-0, Kent Mercker 3-0
Batters Faced - Eric Milton 23, David Weathers 5, Ben Weber 7, Kent Mercker 6
Game Information
Attendance - 16218
Game Time - 3:15
Temperature - 60
Umpires - Home - Bob Davidson, First Base - Marty Foster, Second Base - Jim Joyce, Third Base - Lazaro Diaz