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Cincinnati at Houston

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Cincinnati (6-5) «000000301473
Houston (4-8)001000001271

Reds 4, Astros 2

CBSSports.com wire reports
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HOUSTON -- Micah Owings isn't your ordinary starting pitcher. After all, not many love to hit in clutch situations.

Owings' pinch two-run double in the seventh inning helped the Cincinnati Reds rally for a 4-2 victory over the Houston Astros on Sunday.

Owings hit the first pitch he saw from Geoff Geary into center field, driving in Ramon Hernandez and Alex Gonzalez and giving the Reds a 3-1 lead.

"Anytime I can get in the box, I love it," said Owings, who is scheduled to start Tuesday in Chicago. "I just like the opportunity."

Owings, who won the 2007 NL Silver Slugger award for pitchers, is 2-for-3 as a pinch hitter this season. Geary set up the tiebreaking hit with a throwing error that allowed Jerry Hairston Jr. to score before Owings came to the plate.

"I was just looking for something I could drive," Owings said. "I know there were some other guys in the dugout chomping at the bit to get that chance so I really was glad to have the opportunity."

Manager Dusty Baker wanted to save position players like Darnell McDonald and Paul Janish for later pinch-hit situations.

"So it was a process of elimination to use Micah," Baker said. "But he's a very good option to have. He works at hitting as much as he does pitching. He takes extra BP all the time.

"He can hit and he knows he can hit. He didn't waste any time and that's what you need to do as a pinch hitter."

Geary (0-1) eventually got out of the seventh, but the damage was done. He allowed two runs, one earned.

"There's nothing tough about facing a pitcher in comparison to a hitter," Geary said. "He's a fastball-hitting pitcher. I was given a choice of throwing a fastball or a slider or curveball away.

"I thought well if I can throw a fastball in off the plate the most he could do was roll over it. I watched the video. He opened up his front side, got greedy and hit it off the wall. I won't make that mistake again."

Edinson Volquez (2-1) struck out seven in six innings for Cincinnati, yielding one run and four hits with five walks. Francisco Cordero pitched the ninth for his fourth save in four tries.

In his first major league game since Sept. 30, 2007, Felipe Paulino pitched six scoreless innings for the Astros.

Paulino was called up from Triple-A Round Rock to start for injured Brian Moehler. After missing all of last season recovering from a pinched nerve in his right arm, Paulino struck out six, allowed three hits and walked two.

"We got a great start from Paulino," manager Cecil Cooper said. "I think he did a terrific job today. He just kind of ran out of pitches a little bit, but I thought he was really overpowering, and he opened a lot of eyes."

Miguel Tejada's RBI single in the third inning gave Houston a 1-0 lead.

Volquez got out of one-out, bases-loaded jams in the third and fifth innings. He struck out Hunter Pence and retired Geoff Blum on a popup to end the third, and got some help with a disputed double play in the fifth.

Blum hit a slow roller to second baseman Brandon Phillips, who tagged Pence and threw to first for the final out of the fifth. Pence said Phillips missed the tag and he and Cooper briefly argued the call with second base umpire Joe West.

McDonald had a pinch-hit triple in the ninth and scored on Willy Taveras' sacrifice fly. Carlos Lee hit a sacrifice fly for Houston in the bottom half.

Notes

Tejada has 1,100 career RBI. ... Houston's Kaz Matsui didn't start for the fifth straight game with a sore back. He ran for Blum in the eighth and stayed in the game at second base. ... It was the Reds' 400th win against Houston. Cincinnati has more than 400 wins against seven other teams: the Braves (1,069), Phillies (1,043), Dodgers (995), Cubs (979), Pirates (970), Cardinals (928) and Giants (910). ... Jay Bruce didn't start for the second straight game because of a sore right hand. He ran for Owings in the seventh.

 
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

M. Owings
IP 0.0
H 0
ER 0
BB 0
K 0
Houston

M. Tejada
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Cincinnati Reds
Willy Taveras, CF2011100 .267
Chris Dickerson, LF4000023 .217
Joey Votto, 1B4000013 .349
Brandon Phillips, 2B4000001 .176
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B3000120 .156
Laynce Nix, RF2020000 .333
   a- Jerry Hairston Jr., PH-RF1110100 .211
Ramon Hernandez, C4110014 .188
Alex Gonzalez, SS3100011 .069
Edinson Volquez, P2000010 .000
   b- Micah Owings, PH1012000 .400
    Jay Bruce, PR0000000 .176
    Arthur Rhodes, P0000000 .000
    David Weathers, P0000000 .000
   c- Darnell McDonald, PH1110000 .333
    Francisco Cordero, P0000000 .000
Totals3147338  
a-walked for Nix in the 7th
b-doubled for Volquez in the 7th
c-tripled for Weathers in the 9th
Batting
2B - Laynce Nix (3, Paulino), Micah Owings (2, Geary)
3B - Darnell McDonald (1, Sampson)
SF - Willy Taveras (1)
SH - Alex Gonzalez (1)
RBI - Willy Taveras (1), Micah Owings 2 (2)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - B. Phillips-Votto, Encarnacion-Votto
E - Chris Dickerson (1, Throwing), Edinson Volquez (1, Missed catch of throw), Joey Votto (1, Misplayed grounder)
Cincinnati Reds
Edinson Volquez (W,2-1) 6411570 6.46
Arthur Rhodes (H,3) 1100010 0.00
David Weathers (H,4) 1100110 0.00
Francisco Cordero (S,4) 1111210 1.80
Pitches-Strikes - Edinson Volquez 104-62, Arthur Rhodes 19-11, David Weathers 26-17, Francisco Cordero 32-19
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Edinson Volquez 8-3, Arthur Rhodes 2-0, David Weathers 1-1
Batters Faced - Edinson Volquez 27, Arthur Rhodes 4, David Weathers 5, Francisco Cordero 6
Houston Astros
Michael Bourn, CF4210111 .250
Miguel Tejada, SS5031000 .383
Lance Berkman, 1B3010213 .200
Carlos Lee, LF2001212 .238
Hunter Pence, RF3010215 .302
Geoff Blum, 3B3000114 .297
    Kazuo Matsui, PR-2B1000002 .207
Jason Smith, 2B-3B3000020 .000
Humberto Quintero, C3000000 .000
   a- Jason Michaels, PH1000002 .091
    Chris Sampson, P0000000 .000
Felipe Paulino, P2010010 .500
   b- Darin Erstad, PH1000010 .143
    Tim Byrdak, P0000000 .000
    Geoff Geary, P0000000 .000
    Jeff Fulchino, P0000000 .000
   c- Ivan Rodriguez, PH-C1000012 .225
Totals32272810  
a-lined out for Quintero in the 8th
b-struck out for Paulino in the 6th
c-struck out for Fulchino in the 8th
Batting
SF - Carlos Lee (2)
SH - Jason Smith (1)
RBI - Miguel Tejada (1), Carlos Lee (7)
Team LOB - 13
Fielding
DP - Smith-Tejada-Berkman, Smith-Tejada-Berkman
E - Geoff Geary (1, Throwing)
Houston Astros
Felipe Paulino 6300260 0.00
Tim Byrdak0011100 3.86
Geoff Geary (BS,1; L,0-1) 1221010 4.50
Jeff Fulchino 1100010 0.00
Chris Sampson 1111000 1.13
HBP - Dickerson (by Felipe Paulino), Taveras (by Geoff Geary)
Pitches-Strikes - Felipe Paulino 97-61, Tim Byrdak 6-2, Geoff Geary 20-10, Jeff Fulchino 19-14, Chris Sampson 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Felipe Paulino 6-5, Geoff Geary 2-0, Chris Sampson 2-1
Batters Faced - Felipe Paulino 23, Tim Byrdak 1, Geoff Geary 6, Jeff Fulchino 4, Chris Sampson 4
Game Information
Attendance - 29372
Game Time - 3:19
Temperature - 74
Umpires - Home - Paul Schrieber, First Base - Paul Nauert, Second Base - Joe West, Third Base - Ed Rapuano