CINCINNATI -- Javier Valentin doesn't get many starts, so he tries not to waste them.
The Cincinnati catcher, starting for the first time in three weeks, homered in consecutive at-bats Friday night and Adam Dunn added his 40th of the season to send the Reds to a 9-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
"I went a couple of weeks between starts, but it's been that way all year," said Valentin, stuck in a three-man catching situation with Dan Ross and Jason LaRue. "Tonight was my night."
Dunn became the second player in Reds history to hit at least 40 home runs in three consecutive seasons. Ted Kluszewski (1953-1955) was the first.
Valentin snapped a 1-1 tie with his seventh homer of the season, an opposite-field shot to left leading off the fourth inning. He followed in the sixth with a two-run line drive into the visitors' bullpen down the right-field line.
"He's probably been hurt more by having three catchers than anybody," Reds manager Jerry Narron said. "We haven't been able to find matchups that are favorable for him. Tonight, we were able to."
Valentin's home runs off Pirates starter Ian Snell were his first since his last start, against Pittsburgh on Aug. 18 in a 7-3 Pirates win. Snell also was the Pittsburgh starter in that game, but reliever Britt Reames allowed Valentin's homer.
Lohse (2-2) snapped his two-game skid. He allowed seven hits and one run with one walk and six strikeouts.
"My sinker or two-seamer or whatever you want to call it was working," Lohse said. "I was able to come in on them and run it up the ladder on them. It was one of those nights where I was able to put the ball where I wanted to and change speeds."
Snell (12-10) has lost his last two starts after logging three wins and a no-decision in his previous four. He allowed seven hits and four runs with three walks and five strikeouts in six innings. He has allowed a team-high 28 home runs in 29 starts.
"I feel like I'm home run prone," Snell said. "I feel like I'm brainwashed. I'm processing too much information for my first (full) year. There's a lot of stuff in my brain that I feel like I need to get washed away."
The nine runs were the most for the Reds in 15 games since they beat Houston 14-0 on Aug. 22.
"He didn't have late life on his pitches," Pirates manager Jim Tracy said about Snell. "He was getting the ball up. You could tell by the fly balls."
National League batting leader Freddy Sanchez (.341) went 0-for-4 for the Pirates, who had won three of their last four games.
Freel led off the first inning with his eighth home run. Ryan Doumit tied it with a solo homer in the second, his third of the season -- all since he was activated from the disabled list on Aug. 23 after missing almost three months with a torn left hamstring.
Dunn hit a two-run homer and Scott Hatteberg added a two-run single as the Reds sent 10 batters to the plate against three Pittsburgh relievers in a five-run seventh inning.
The Reds had at least one baserunner in every inning against Snell, while the Pirates had at least one baserunner in every inning except the third against Lohse.
|With this swing, Adam Dunn becomes just the second Red to hit 40 HRs in three straight seasons. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Chris Duffy, CF||4||0||1||0||0||2||2||.226|
|Jack Wilson, SS||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||.275|
|Freddy Sanchez, 2B||4||0||0||0||0||0||3||.341|
|Jason Bay, LF||4||0||0||0||0||0||2||.282|
|Xavier Nady, RF||3||0||1||0||1||0||0||.289|
|Ryan Doumit, 1B||4||1||1||1||0||1||3||.206|
|Ronny Paulino, C||3||0||2||0||0||0||0||.317|
|Carlos Maldonado, C||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||1.000|
|Jose Bautista, 3B||2||0||0||0||0||2||1||.246|
|Ian Snell, P||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.064|
|a- Joe Randa, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.260|
|Brian Rogers, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Juan Perez, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Josh Sharpless, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Rajai Davis, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||2||.200|
|a-grounded out for Snell in the 7th|
|b-grounded out for Sharpless in the 9th|
|2B - Chris Duffy (10, Lohse)|
|HR - Ryan Doumit (3, Lohse)|
|SH - Jose Bautista (3), Ian Snell (9)|
|RBI - Ryan Doumit (10)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|DP - J. Wilson-Doumit|
|Ian Snell (L,12-10)||6||7||4||4||3||5||3||4.88|
|HBP - Encarnacion (by Ian Snell)|
|WP - Ian Snell (6)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Ian Snell 105-59, Brian Rogers 8-8, Juan Perez 17-11, Josh Sharpless 19-7|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ian Snell 6-7, Juan Perez 1-1, Josh Sharpless 3-1|
|Batters Faced - Ian Snell 29, Brian Rogers 4, Juan Perez 5, Josh Sharpless 6|
|Ryan Freel, CF||4||1||3||1||1||0||0||.279|
|Scott Hatteberg, 1B||4||0||1||2||1||0||3||.305|
|Rich Aurilia, SS||5||1||3||0||0||0||3||.303|
|Todd Coffey, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Gary Majewski, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Adam Dunn, LF||3||1||1||2||1||0||2||.243|
|Juan Castro, SS-3B||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.248|
|Edwin Encarnacion, 3B||3||2||1||0||0||0||3||.292|
|a- Ray Olmedo, PH-SS||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.278|
|Javier Valentin, C||4||3||3||3||1||1||0||.250|
|Todd Hollandsworth, RF||2||0||0||0||1||1||0||.242|
|b- Norris Hopper, PH-RF||0||0||0||1||1||0||0||.500|
|Brandon Phillips, 2B||5||0||1||0||0||2||3||.288|
|Kyle Lohse, P||3||0||0||0||0||1||2||.176|
|c- Chris Denorfia, PH-LF||1||1||0||0||0||0||1||.218|
|a-grounded out for Encarnacion in the 8th|
|b-hit a sacrifice fly for Hollandsworth in the 7th|
|c-hit into fielder's choice for Lohse in the 7th|
|HR - Ryan Freel (8, Snell), Adam Dunn (40, Rogers), Javier Valentin 2 (8, Snell, Snell)|
|SF - Norris Hopper (1)|
|RBI - Ryan Freel (25), Scott Hatteberg 2 (51), Adam Dunn 2 (90), Javier Valentin 3 (26), Norris Hopper (2)|
|2-OUT RBI - Scott Hatteberg 2 (16)|
|Team LOB - 11|
|DP - Aurilia-B. Phillips-Hatteberg|
|Kyle Lohse (W,4-7)||7||7||1||1||1||6||1||5.35|
|HBP - J. Bautista (by Gary Majewski)|
|WP - Kyle Lohse (3)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Kyle Lohse 98-61, Todd Coffey 5-3, Gary Majewski 13-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kyle Lohse 10-4, Todd Coffey 3-0, Gary Majewski 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Kyle Lohse 28, Todd Coffey 3, Gary Majewski 5|
|Attendance - 17631|
|Game Time - 2:39|
|Temperature - 82|
|Umpires - Home - Tony Randazzo, First Base - Jim Wolf, Second Base - Joe West, Third Base - Ed Rapuano|