|Cincinnati (67-51) «||0||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||x||2||7||0|
CINCINNATI -- The best way to get over a depressing sweep? Pull off one of your own.
Miguel Cairo hit a two-run homer and Homer Bailey filled in quite nicely for the suspended Johnny Cueto, throwing six impressive innings Sunday to lead the Cincinnati Reds to a 2-0 victory and a rejuvenating three-game sweep of the Florida Marlins.
The Reds got swept by the Cardinals in their showdown series earlier in the week, one that temporarily knocked them out of first place in the NL Central. Cueto got a seven-game suspension for kicking Cardinals during a brawl. The young Reds team got its comeuppance during that series.
Didn't take them long to recover. The Reds moved back into first place by a game when St. Louis lost to the Chicago Cubs 9-7 later Sunday.
"We lose one, two or three games, and the young kids are learning how to come back from that," Cairo said. "It's already in the past."
Bailey (2-2) was activated off the disabled list and allowed only three hits in six innings, retiring the last 10 batters he faced.
Logan Ondrusek pitched out of a bases-loaded threat in the seventh by fanning pinch-hitter Chad Tracy. Closer Francisco Cordero, booed the previous night when he struggled to close out a victory, gave up a double and a walk in the ninth before striking out pinch-hitter Donnie Murphy for his 32nd save in 38 chances.
"It felt good," Bailey said. "The biggest thing is that we were able to pick up the sweep and we go on our road trip on a high."
The Marlins fell to 3-14 at Great American Ball Park since 2006. They've lost eight of their past 12 games overall, with the offense struggling. Florida went 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position Sunday and was 0 for 27 in the series.
"You're not going to be too successful without getting hits with runners in scoring position," said Dan Uggla, who singled twice. "Homer Bailey has ace-potential stuff. When he's on like he was today, he's tough to hit."
The sweep got the Reds moving ahead again after their tumultuous series against St. Louis. Cueto was forced to miss a start because he kicked pitcher Chris Carpenter and catcher Jason LaRue during a brawl touched off by Brandon Phillips' inflammatory comments.
Manager Dusty Baker also got a two-game suspension. He was back in the dugout to see his Reds complete the sweep, which kept Cincinnati neck-and-neck with St. Louis.
Now, the Reds get one of their toughest tests -- a trip to Arizona, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Over the last five seasons, the Reds are 16-35 on the West Coast, where they've had many a season scuttled. LA has provided an especially bad time -- Cincinnati has dropped its past 12 at Dodger Stadium since 2006.
"It's a law-of-averages road trip for us going West after all these years," Baker said.
Sanchez is one of the majors' best at avoiding home runs -- only five allowed in his previous 22 starts -- but even he couldn't escape one of the majors' most homer-friendly ballparks. Cairo's drive landed in the first row of seats in left field.
"The home run by Cairo would have been off the wall in our park," Marlins manager Edwin Rodriguez said.
The Reds lost top hitter Joey Votto to another ejection in the first inning.
Votto, the NL's top hitter at .322, was ejected by plate umpire D.J. Reyburn after disagreeing with a called strike -- his fourth ejection in the past two seasons for arguing balls-and-strikes. Baker said Votto had complained about a strike call to Jay Bruce when he was on deck.
Marlins center fielder Emilio Bonifacio stole a hit from Jim Edmonds in the fourth, jumping to catch his fly at the top of the wall with one runner aboard. Edmonds later doubled, his first hit in 13 at-bats since the Reds got him in a trade with Milwaukee.
|Reds manager Dusty Baker (12) congratulates Miguel Cairo after Sunday's 2-0 win over Florida. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Hanley Ramirez, SS||4||0||0||0||0||2||0||.287|
|Logan Morrison, LF||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||.290|
|Gaby Sanchez, 1B||4||0||1||0||0||1||2||.289|
|Dan Uggla, 2B||4||0||2||0||0||0||1||.286|
|Mike Stanton, RF||4||0||2||0||0||1||2||.275|
|Wes Helms, 3B||4||0||0||0||0||1||3||.229|
|Emilio Bonifacio, CF||4||0||0||0||0||2||3||.241|
|Ronny Paulino, C||2||0||0||0||1||0||0||.256|
|a- Cody Ross, PH||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.265|
|Anibal Sanchez, P||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||.125|
|b- Chad Tracy, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||3||.235|
|Burke Badenhop, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Will Ohman, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Brian Sanches, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|c- Donnie Murphy, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||2||.250|
|a-walked for Paulino in the 9th|
|b-struck out for Sanchez in the 7th|
|c-struck out for Sanches in the 9th|
|2B - Logan Morrison (5, Masset), Mike Stanton (16, Cordero)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|E - Wes Helms (4, Misplayed grounder)|
|Anibal Sanchez (L,9-8)||6||5||2||2||1||7||1||3.31|
|Pitches-Strikes - Anibal Sanchez 99-64, Burke Badenhop 12-7, Will Ohman 4-3, Brian Sanches 13-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Anibal Sanchez 3-9, Burke Badenhop 1-1, Brian Sanches 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Anibal Sanchez 25, Burke Badenhop 3, Will Ohman 1, Brian Sanches 4|
|Brandon Phillips, 2B||4||0||1||0||0||0||0||.281|
|Jay Bruce, RF||4||0||1||0||0||2||2||.259|
|Joey Votto, 1B||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.322|
|a- Drew Stubbs, PH-CF||4||0||1||0||0||2||1||.236|
|Jonny Gomes, LF||3||1||0||0||1||1||1||.264|
|Francisco Cordero, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jim Edmonds, CF-1B||4||0||1||0||0||2||2||.274|
|Miguel Cairo, 3B||4||1||1||2||0||1||2||.297|
|Ryan Hanigan, C||3||0||1||0||0||0||1||.290|
|Paul Janish, SS||3||0||1||0||0||0||1||.275|
|Homer Bailey, P||2||0||0||0||0||2||0||.200|
|Logan Ondrusek, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Mike Leake, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.356|
|Nick Masset, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Laynce Nix, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.286|
|a-doubled for Votto in the 1st|
|b-flied out for Ondrusek in the 7th|
|2B - Drew Stubbs (11, Sanchez), Jim Edmonds (22, Sanches)|
|HR - Miguel Cairo (4, Sanchez)|
|RBI - Miguel Cairo 2 (25)|
|2-OUT RBI - Miguel Cairo 2 (11)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|Homer Bailey (W,2-2)||6||3||0||0||0||4||0||4.92|
|Logan Ondrusek (H,2)||1||2||0||0||1||2||0||3.43|
|Nick Masset (H,15)||1||1||0||0||0||1||0||3.90|
|Francisco Cordero (S,32)||1||1||0||0||1||2||0||4.05|
|Pitches-Strikes - Homer Bailey 102-71, Logan Ondrusek 19-13, Nick Masset 13-9, Francisco Cordero 24-15|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Homer Bailey 7-7, Nick Masset 1-1, Francisco Cordero 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Homer Bailey 21, Logan Ondrusek 6, Nick Masset 4, Francisco Cordero 5|
|Attendance - 29849|
|Game Time - 2:54|
|Temperature - 86|
|Umpires - Home - D.J. Reyburn, First Base - Mike Winters, Second Base - Chris Guccione, Third Base - Phil Cuzzi|