Houston at Cincinnati

Scoreboard
Houston (71-88) «000000202471
Cincinnati (71-88)200000001351

Astros 4, Reds 3

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Carlos Lee would have preferred a playoff berth, but he'll settle for a personal best.

Lee set a career high for RBI with a tie-breaking, ninth-inning single as the Houston Astros beat Cincinnati 4-3 on Thursday to complete a three-game sweep of the Reds.

"It feels good to go out and have the satisfaction that you did the job -- that you did everything you could," said the left fielder, signed by Houston as a free agent during the offseason. "You'd rather be in another situation, like a celebration for clinching the playoffs, but things don't always work out the way you want."

Ty Wigginton doubled off the wall in left field with one out against Gary Majewski (0-4) and he scored on Lee's single to left. Lee went to second on the throw home and advanced to third on Majewski's throwing error before scoring on Eric Bruntlett's single.

"You know there's going to be a play at the plate, and if he's out, you want to be in scoring position for the next guy," said Lee, who drove in a combined 116 runs with Milwaukee and Texas last season. "I was almost at second when I saw the ball go over the shortstop's head, so I kept on running."

Cincinnati right-hander Matt Belisle was perfect through six innings but he couldn't help the Reds avoid being swept by the Astros in a three-game series in Cincinnati for the first time since Aug. 30-Sept. 1, 2004.

"It was just a great flow," Belisle said. "They were swinging, and we were getting ahead. It was a great feeling."

It was the Reds' fifth consecutive loss, one shy of their season high, and the Astros swept their first road series of more than two games this season in their last chance.

"First sweep on the road is nice -- really, really nice," interim manager Cecil Cooper said. "Guys just keep doing what they do and playing hard."

Dave Borkowski (5-3) pitched a perfect eighth inning for the win. Brad Lidge gave up a run in the bottom of the ninth but earned his 18th save in 26 opportunities.

Lidge walked Jorge Cantu and David Ross to lead off the inning and they were sacrificed to second and third. Cantu scored on Javier Valentin's single, but Lidge got two fielder's choice grounders to end the game.

Belisle retired the first 18 batters he faced and the Reds led 2-0 before Josh Anderson led off the seventh with a clean single to left.

Anderson moved to third on Chris Burke's double and Cody Ransom walked to load the bases. Anderson scored on Lee's double-play grounder before Hunter Pence tied the game with a single to center.

Belisle was lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh after giving up three hits and two runs with a walk and four strikeouts.

Edwin Encarnacion gave the Reds a 2-0 lead against left-hander Wandy Rodriguez in the first inning with his 16th home run of the season and first in 27 at-bats, but with Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn lost for the season with injuries, the Reds couldn't add to their lead.

"We've got some of our bench guys playing in the game, and it's hard to score -- understandably so," Reds interim manager Pete Mackanin said.

Rodriguez allowed four hits and two runs in seven innings with three walks and six strikeouts.

Notes

The Reds brought INF Mark Bellhorn up from the minor leagues and transferred LHP Bobby Livingston to the 60-day DL. ... 1B Lance Berkman was scratched from interim manager Cecil Cooper's original starting lineup because of a sore right knee. Mike Lamb was moved from third base to first base and Ransom was inserted at third base. ... The last pitcher to throw a complete game no-hitter against Houston was right-hander Jim Maloney in a 10-0 win at Cincinnati's Crosley Field on April 30, 1969.

 
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
Cincinnati

E. Encarnacion
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
Houston

C. Lee
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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Houston Astros
Josh Anderson, CF4110011 .382
Chris Burke, 2B4110000 .232
Cody Ransom, 3B2000120 .229
    Ty Wigginton, 3B1110000 .279
Carlos Lee, LF4111000 .303
Hunter Pence, RF4011021 .324
Mike Lamb, 1B3000101 .291
Eric Bruntlett, SS4011000 .248
J.R. Towles, C4010002 .389
Wandy Rodriguez, P2000000 .122
   a- Orlando Palmeiro, PH0000000 .238
   b- Craig Biggio, PH1000001 .249
    Dave Borkowski, P0000000 .000
    Brad Lidge, P0000000 .000
Totals3347325  
a-announced for Rodriguez in the 8th
b-lined out for Palmeiro in the 8th
Batting
2B - Chris Burke (19, Belisle), Ty Wigginton (32, Majewski)
RBI - Carlos Lee (117), Hunter Pence (68), Eric Bruntlett (14)
2-OUT RBI - Hunter Pence (28), Eric Bruntlett (10)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
E - Ty Wigginton (11, Throwing)
Houston Astros
Wandy Rodriguez 7422361 4.58
Dave Borkowski (W,5-3) 1000000 5.22
Brad Lidge (S,18) 1111200 3.41
IBB - B. Phillips by Wandy Rodriguez
Pitches-Strikes - Wandy Rodriguez 113-69, Dave Borkowski 8-6, Brad Lidge 19-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Wandy Rodriguez 6-9, Dave Borkowski 1-2, Brad Lidge 3-0
Batters Faced - Wandy Rodriguez 28, Dave Borkowski 3, Brad Lidge 6
Cincinnati Reds
Norris Hopper, CF5010014 .334
Jeff Keppinger, 2B4110001 .333
Joey Votto, LF4000002 .333
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B3112110 .291
Jorge Cantu, 1B3100112 .250
David Ross, C2000200 .204
Jason Ellison, RF2010000 .238
Pedro Lopez, SS3000022 .171
   a- Javier Valentin, PH1011000 .275
    Jerry Gil, PR0000000 .000
Matt Belisle, P2000011 .060
   b- Brandon Phillips, PH0000100 .290
    Marcus McBeth, P0000000 .000
    Bill Bray, P0000000 .000
    Gary Majewski, P0000000 .000
    Brad Salmon, P0000000 .000
   c- Buck Coats, PH1000000 .273
Totals3035356  
a-singled for Lopez in the 9th
b-was walked intentionally for Belisle in the 7th
c-hit into fielder's choice for Salmon in the 9th
Batting
2B - Jeff Keppinger (16, Rodriguez)
HR - Edwin Encarnacion (16, Rodriguez)
SH - Jason Ellison 2 (3)
RBI - Edwin Encarnacion 2 (76), Javier Valentin (34)
2-OUT RBI - Edwin Encarnacion 2 (32)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Keppinger-Lopez-Cantu
E - Gary Majewski (1, Throwing)
Cincinnati Reds
Matt Belisle 7322140 5.32
Marcus McBeth 0.1100000 6.27
Bill Bray 0.2000000 6.43
Gary Majewski (L,0-4) 0.2322110 8.22
Brad Salmon 0.1000000 3.42
IBB - Lamb by Gary Majewski
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Belisle 80-56, Marcus McBeth 13-9, Bill Bray 7-6, Gary Majewski 20-10, Brad Salmon 1-1
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Belisle 4-12, Bill Bray 1-1
Batters Faced - Matt Belisle 24, Marcus McBeth 2, Bill Bray 2, Gary Majewski 6, Brad Salmon 1
Game Information
Attendance - 13626
Game Time - 2:34
Temperature - 70
Umpires - Home - Doug Eddings, First Base - Mike Everitt, Second Base - Chris Guccione, Third Base - Kerwin Danley