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Pittsburgh at Cincinnati

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Pittsburgh (20-27)000000000063
Cincinnati (27-20) «01001101x4100

Reds ace Arroyo works into eighth inning to earn fifth straight win

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Bronson Arroyo's pitches were moving so unpredictably to the first few batters that catcher Ryan Hanigan went out to the mound with a funny suggestion.

"He said, 'You're so bad today, I'm going to set [the mitt] down the middle and you throw it,"' Arroyo said.

No need to get so drastic.

The right-hander quickly got things under control and pitched into the eighth inning for his fifth straight win, leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 4-0 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.

Arroyo (5-2) allowed five hits -- all singles -- in 7 2/3 innings. He walked Aki Iwamura to start the game, then managed to get his pitches going where he intended.

"Sometimes you feel funky out there," said Arroyo, who also had trouble with his control warming up. "I couldn't get a groove going. I got out of that [first inning] and my command came back. I kind of got on a roll."

He started fading in the eighth on a warm, muggy night, leaving after his 113th pitch. Daniel Ray Herrera pitched out of a bases-loaded threat, striking out Garrett Jones on a 66 mph screwball to end Pittsburgh's last chance.

Orlando Cabrera drove in two runs, and Miguel Cairo had a solo homer off Ross Ohlendorf (0-3), who was in trouble most of his six innings. The right-hander gave up eight hits and walked five, also struggling at the outset.

Ohlendorf missed roughly a month because of back spasms. He's 0-3 since his return from the disabled list and still trying to get back in form. He walked three in the first two innings, setting himself up for a tough time.

"I'm definitely not pitching like I'd like to," Ohlendorf said. "After the first two innings, I felt a lot better. I was able to relax and trust my stuff more. I was nibbling in the first two innings."

Manager John Russell liked the way Ohlendorf pitched after those ragged, opening innings.

"I think it's a step in the right direction," Russell said. "Once he picked up the tempo, he threw the ball pretty well. I hope he builds off it and has confidence when he takes the mound."

The Reds have won eight of 12, jostling with the St. Louis Cardinals for the top spot in the NL Central. They began the day with identical records.

Pittsburgh has been shut out seven times, most in the NL. Things don't get any easier for the Pirates in the finale of the four-game series -- they face Johnny Cueto, who threw a one-hitter for a 9-0 win in Pittsburgh on May 11.

The Pirates have scored the second-fewest runs in the NL. They got only one runner to third base against Arroyo, who tends to be streaky. He's on quite a tear now. The right-hander is 5-0 in his last six starts, allowing only 13 earned runs.

Second baseman Brandon Phillips made two impressive plays behind Arroyo, ranging far to snag a grounder and start a difficult double play in the sixth, then leaping well off the ground to snag Lastings Milledge's liner in the seventh.

"I'm still surprised I got up that high," Phillips said. "I felt like I was on a [basketball] court. On that one, I had time to squat and get up. I don't think I've jumped that high for a ball since the minor leagues. I think that's the highest I've gone."

Arroyo's bunt single helped the Reds load the bases with one out in the second. Cabrera hit a sacrifice fly, but the Pirates nailed Hanigan at the plate when he tried to score from second base on Cairo's single.

Cairo hit his first homer in the fifth inning. He had only one homer last season, on Oct. 4 with Philadelphia. Cairo has four homers in the last six seasons while playing for the Mets, Yankees, Cardinals, Mariners, Phillies and Reds.

Chris Heisey's pinch-hit homer in the eighth off Brendan Donnelly made it 4-0. The Reds have four pinch-hit homers, two by Heisey.

Notes

  • Pirates 3B Andy LaRoche missed his fifth straight game with a sore back.
  • Reds LHP Arthur Rhodes was unavailable out of the bullpen because of a sore foot.
  • An estimated 650 dogs were with their owners in the stands by the right-field foul pole, part of an annual pet promotion. During the nightly 'KissCam' segment, the videoboard showed a couple with their dog. The woman kissed the dog but not the man.
 
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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Bronson Arroyo gives up just five singles in 7 2/3 innings on the mound. (AP)
Bronson Arroyo gives up just five singles in 7 2/3 innings on the mound. (AP)

Players of the Game
Cincinnati

M. Cairo
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
Cincinnati

B. Arroyo
IP 7.2
H 5
ER 0
BB 2
K 3
 
Pittsburgh Pirates
Akinori Iwamura, 2B3010101 .169
Neil Walker, 3B4020001 .375
Andrew McCutchen, CF3000102 .318
Garrett Jones, RF-1B4010014 .259
Ryan Doumit, C4000001 .285
Lastings Milledge, LF3000101 .258
Jeff Clement, 1B3010010 .189
    D.J. Carrasco, P0000000 .000
    Brendan Donnelly, P0000000 .000
   a- Ryan Church, PH1000011 .204
Ronny Cedeno, SS3010111 .252
Ross Ohlendorf, P2000013 .000
    Delwyn Young, RF1000001 .243
Totals3106045  
a-struck out for Donnelly in the 9th
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Garrett Jones 1
DP - Cedeno-Iwamura-G. Jones
E - Ryan Doumit (2, Throwing), Ross Ohlendorf (2, Throwing), Neil Walker (1, Throwing)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Ross Ohlendorf (L,0-3) 6833551 5.11
D.J. Carrasco 1100200 3.94
Brendan Donnelly 1111001 5.54
HBP - Cairo (by Brendan Donnelly)
Pitches-Strikes - Ross Ohlendorf 94-53, D.J. Carrasco 20-10, Brendan Donnelly 10-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ross Ohlendorf 4-7, D.J. Carrasco 3-0, Brendan Donnelly 2-0
Batters Faced - Ross Ohlendorf 29, D.J. Carrasco 6, Brendan Donnelly 4
Cincinnati Reds
Orlando Cabrera, SS3012100 .280
Miguel Cairo, 1B4121024 .216
Brandon Phillips, 2B3000201 .262
Scott Rolen, 3B3000103 .265
Jay Bruce, RF3010122 .272
Laynce Nix, LF4000003 .246
Drew Stubbs, CF3120100 .222
Ryan Hanigan, C3120103 .338
Bronson Arroyo, P2010011 .136
    Nick Masset, P0000000 .000
    Danny Herrera, P0000000 .000
   a- Chris Heisey, PH1111000 .280
    Francisco Cordero, P0000000 .000
Totals29410475  
a-homered for Herrera in the 8th
Batting
HR - Miguel Cairo (1, Ohlendorf), Chris Heisey (3, Donnelly)
SF - Orlando Cabrera (6)
SH - Bronson Arroyo (2)
RBI - Orlando Cabrera 2 (23), Miguel Cairo (4), Chris Heisey (4)
2-OUT RBI - Orlando Cabrera (9)
SB - Orlando Cabrera (7, 3rd base off Ohlendorf/Doumit), Brandon Phillips 2 (6, 2nd base off Ohlendorf/Doumit, 3rd base off Ohlendorf/Doumit)
CS - Drew Stubbs (3, 3rd base by Ohlendorf/Doumit)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Arroyo-Cabrera-Cairo, B. Phillips-Cabrera-Cairo
Cincinnati Reds
Bronson Arroyo (W,5-2) 7.2500230 4.30
Nick Masset0100100 7.29
Danny Herrera (H,7) 0.1000010 3.29
Francisco Cordero 1000110 3.75
IBB - Cedeno by Bronson Arroyo
WP - Nick Masset (5)
Pitches-Strikes - Bronson Arroyo 113-81, Nick Masset 9-4, Danny Herrera 6-4, Francisco Cordero 18-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bronson Arroyo 7-11, Francisco Cordero 2-0
Batters Faced - Bronson Arroyo 28, Nick Masset 2, Danny Herrera 1, Francisco Cordero 4
Game Information
Attendance - 18137
Game Time - 2:54
Temperature - 81
Umpires - Home - Todd Tichenor, First Base - Marvin Hudson, Second Base - Jim Joyce, Third Base - Jim Wolf