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Cincinnati at Chicago

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Cincinnati (7-9) «002002000473
Chi. Cubs (4-12)000020001362

Reds edge Cubs behind Cueto

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- On a cold blustery day, Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker was happy to be able to walk away with a victory.

Johnny Cueto threw 6 1/3 strong innings to lead Cincinnati to a 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs on Sunday in a ragged performance by both teams in tough playing conditions.

"It's what you call an ugly win, I guess," Baker said. "It was sort of which team played the worst today. We were fortunate enough to come away with the win."

Cueto (2-0) allowed one earned run, scattering five hits. He struck out seven and lowered his ERA to 1.78 for the season.

"I felt [good] the whole time today," Cueto said through an interpreter. "I like the way I threw all the pitches because I was aggressive with every single pitch I threw today."

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Cueto worked around a single, walk and his own error in the third inning, and gave up both of his runs in the fifth, a Cubs rally that included another error and a hit batter.

"Johnny was great today, until that one inning he kind of lost it," Baker said.

That inning was the seventh, when he walked a batter and hit another with a pitch before giving way to Logan Ondrusek, who walked Steve Clevenger to load the bases. Ondrusek recovered to strike out Alfonso Soriano.

Aroldis Chapman came on to strike out Ian Stewart looking with a fastball that registered 99 miles per hour on the stadium scoreboard, preserving the lead.

Chapman also worked a scoreless eighth, though he did walk his first two batters this season. In 10 1-3 scoreless innings, Chapman has 18 strikeouts while allowing just three hits. Former Cub Sean Marshall pitched the ninth, picking up his third save.

"It's a good cap to our weekend," Marshall said. "Our team played hard under some tough conditions in Chicago. It's good to win a series and go home on the plane happy."

The Reds capitalized on Chicago mistakes to break a 2-2 tie in the sixth. Randy Wells and reliever Scott Maine combined to walk two batters and hit another, while Geovany Soto made two throwing errors on sacrifice bunt attempts.

All told, the Reds sent eight batters to the plate in the sixth, scoring two unearned runs without the benefit of a hit.

"We walked the leadoff guy and everything kind of snowballed," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "They were giving us outs [on bunts] and we didn't get the outs on the bunts."

Wells was making his first start of the season in place of Ryan Dempster, who was put on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with a right quad strain. Wells struggled with his command, walking five batters in five innings and throwing just 52 of his 93 pitches for strikes.

"I wasn't quite as sharp as I'd like to be, but being the first time out it was exciting," Wells said.

Wells managed to keep the damage to a minimum, limiting the Reds to two runs and leaving with a no-decision. Rodrigo Lopez (0-1) took the loss in relief.

Cincinnati left 13 runners on base, while Chicago stranded 12. The teams combined to leave the bases full five times.

"You keep putting them out there, something good is going to happen," Baker said. "I tell the guys that pressure busts the pipe."

Joey Votto doubled twice, walked twice, scored a run and drove in another to pace the Reds' offense. The slugging first baseman went his 14th straight game without a home run.

Castro singled, tripled and scored two runs for the Cubs, extending his hitting streak to 10 games, the sixth streak at least that long in his young career. He has reached base in 55 of his last 56 games.

"We battled and got on base," Sveum said. "We just couldn't get that big hit."

The Reds improved to 7-0 this season when scoring more than three runs. Cincinnati is 0-9 when scoring less than four runs. Runs were hard to come by all weekend, with the temperature in the low 40s and the wind blowing in from the north.

Notes

  • Wells was recalled before the game from Triple-A Iowa, taking the roster spot of Marlon Byrd. The Cubs' starting center fielder was traded to Boston on Saturday for reliever Michael Bowden and a player to be named later.
  • Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips missed the game because of the lingering left hamstring injury that has caused him to miss six of Cincinnati's last 12 games.
 
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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Johnny Cueto goes 6 1/3 innings to earn the win and lower his season ERA to a miniscule 1.78.  (AP)
Johnny Cueto goes 6 1/3 innings to earn the win and lower his season ERA to a miniscule 1.78. (AP)

Players of the Game
Cincinnati

J. Votto
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Chicago

S. Castro
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 
Cincinnati Reds
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Zack Cozart, SS3000111 .279
Drew Stubbs, CF4111111 .242
Joey Votto, 1B3121212 .291
Ryan Ludwick, LF3000105 .195
Jay Bruce, RF4011114 .233
Scott Rolen, 3B5011037 .170
Willie Harris, 2B3000001 .077
   a- Wilson Valdez, PH-2B2010000 .217
Ryan Hanigan, C3110201 .219
Johnny Cueto, P2100011 .167
    Logan Ondrusek, P0000000 .000
    Aroldis Chapman, P0000000 .000
    Sean Marshall, P0000000 .000
Totals3247488  
a-grounded out for Harris in the 7th
Batting
2B - Joey Votto 2 (5, R. Wells, R. Wells), Jay Bruce (3, R. Wells)
SH - Zack Cozart (1), Johnny Cueto 2 (5)
RBI - Drew Stubbs (6), Joey Votto (9), Jay Bruce (7), Scott Rolen (3)
2-OUT RBI - Jay Bruce (2), Scott Rolen (1)
CS - Willie Harris (1, 2nd base by R. Wells/Soto)
Team LOB - 13
Fielding
E - Johnny Cueto (1, Misplayed grounder), Willie Harris (1, Misplayed grounder), Joey Votto (1, Missed catch of throw)
Cincinnati Reds
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Johnny Cueto (W,2-0) 6.1521270 1.78
Logan Ondrusek (H,1) 0.1000110 0.00
Aroldis Chapman (H,2) 1.1000210 0.00
Sean Marshall (S,3) 1111020 3.38
HBP - Mather (by Johnny Cueto), Castro (by Johnny Cueto)
Pitches-Strikes - Johnny Cueto 111-77, Logan Ondrusek 9-4, Aroldis Chapman 29-15, Sean Marshall 19-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Johnny Cueto 8-6, Aroldis Chapman 2-1, Sean Marshall 1-0
Batters Faced - Johnny Cueto 30, Logan Ondrusek 2, Aroldis Chapman 6, Sean Marshall 4
Chicago Cubs
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
David DeJesus, RF4010111 .265
Tony Campana, CF2010100 .500
   a- Reed Johnson, PH-CF1000002 .217
Starlin Castro, SS4220013 .365
Bryan LaHair, 1B2011101 .361
    Rodrigo Lopez, P0000000 .000
    Scott Maine, P0000000 .000
   b- Steve Clevenger, PH-1B1000111 .556
Alfonso Soriano, LF4000017 .212
    Shawn Camp, P0000000 .000
   c- Jeff Baker, PH1001000 .222
Ian Stewart, 3B5010033 .196
Geovany Soto, C4000021 .136
Blake DeWitt, 2B3000011 .105
   d- Darwin Barney, PH-2B1000000 .293
Randy Wells, P1000000 .000
   e- Joe Mather, PH-1B^LF1100111 .235
Totals34362511  
a-grounded out for Campana in the 8th
b-walked for Maine in the 7th
c-grounded out for Camp in the 9th
d-grounded out for DeWitt in the 8th
e-hit by pitch for R. Wells in the 5th
Batting
3B - Starlin Castro (2, Marshall)
SH - Tony Campana (1)
RBI - Bryan LaHair (9), Jeff Baker (2)
2-OUT RBI - Bryan LaHair (2)
Team LOB - 12
Fielding
E - Geovany Soto 2 (3, Throwing)
Chicago Cubs
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Randy Wells 5622520 3.60
Rodrigo Lopez (L,0-1) 0.1020100 5.68
Scott Maine 1.2000130 0.00
Shawn Camp 2100130 4.22
HBP - Ludwick (by Scott Maine)
Pitches-Strikes - Randy Wells 92-52, Rodrigo Lopez 11-5, Scott Maine 33-20, Shawn Camp 30-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Randy Wells 6-6, Rodrigo Lopez 3-0, Scott Maine 2-0, Shawn Camp 3-0
Batters Faced - Randy Wells 25, Rodrigo Lopez 4, Scott Maine 7, Shawn Camp 8
Game Information
Attendance - 35801
Game Time - 3:12
Temperature - 45
Umpires - Home - Gary Darling, First Base - Jerry Meals, Second Base - Lance Barrett, Third Base - Scott Barry