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Los Angeles at Cincinnati

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Los Angeles (34-31) «0102300006100
Cincinnati (29-33)010100000271

Van Slyke goes deep twice; Dodgers handle Reds

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- With two swings, Scott Van Slyke went from backup outfielder to star of the game.

Van Slyke drove in a career-high four runs with two homers off struggling left-hander Tony Cingrani, and the Los Angeles Dodgers pulled away to a 6-2 victory against the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night, a rare comfortable win in their pitching-dominated series.

Van Slyke hit a solo homer and a three-run shot off Cingrani (2-7), who could lose his spot in the rotation when Mat Latos returns from the disabled list later this week. Cingrani gave up a career-high six runs in 4 2/3 innings of his fifth consecutive loss.

The Dodgers like Van Slyke for his versatility. He has started four games in center, 11 in left and three at first base. The problem is that there's no room for him to have a regular spot.

"I know what I'm here for, so I don't mind it," Van Slyke said. "I'm not going to complain."

Nor will the Dodgers.

"He's been good for us all year," manager Don Mattingly said. "This guy's just kind of slowly showing his value over time. He's a guy that sneaks up on you. Plays all three outfield spots really well.

"I think he's a guy that you could expand his role. Obviously that's not here right now."

Dan Haren (6-4) gave up five hits in 5 1/3 innings, including Ryan Ludwick's solo home run, for his first victory since May 12. Brandon League escaped a bases-loaded, no-outs threat in the eighth by getting Ludwick to hit a comebacker that led to a home-to-first double play.

Haren opened the season 4-0 and has been trying to get back into form the past month.

"I started the year throwing the ball very well," Haren said. "I've just really been mediocre here for a while. Today the bullpen picked me up."

The Dodgers have gone 3-1 at the start of their seven-game trip to Colorado and Cincinnati despite hip injuries to right fielder Yasiel Puig and second baseman Dee Gordon. Puig was back in the lineup on Monday and had a single and a walk. Gordon pinch hit in the ninth and beat out an infield single.

The Dodgers and Reds have played a lot of close games the last two seasons. Six of their past seven had been decided by one run, with Cincinnati holding a 4-3 advantage in those games.

Van Slyke made this a comfortable victory for the Dodgers, getting a career-high three hits. In addition to the home runs, he singled and walked twice, reaching base in all five plate appearances.

Van Slyke came into the game with four home runs and seven RBI. He led off the second inning with a home run and ended Cingrani's outing with a three-run shot in the fifth that made it 6-2. It was his second career two-homer game.

Cingrani has struggled since he returned from an inflamed shoulder that landed him on the disabled list. He's 0-5 in those five starts with a 6.26 ERA and nine home runs allowed. The left-hander gave up seven hits -- matching his career high -- and three walks on Monday.

The Reds fell to 3-4 on their 10-game homestand, leaving them fourth in the NL Central.

Haren had one rough inning, helping the Reds tie it at 1 in the second. Brayan Pena snapped a career-worst 0-for-17 slump with a single, and Zack Cozart singled. The runners advanced on a wild pitch, and Pena scored when Haren bounced a pitch to Cingrani with two outs.

Notes

Josh Beckett (3-3) makes his first appearance against the Reds since 2008 on Tuesday. The Reds start Mike Leake (3-5), who has been limited by a sore neck and is coming off his shortest appearance of the season. ... OF Andre Ethier was out of the Dodgers lineup getting a planned day of rest. ... Van Slyke hit two home runs against Atlanta on May 17, 2013. ... Two ducks landed in center and stayed there for an inning. Van Slyke threw sunflower seeds to them. ... Ludwick is 7 for 12 career against Haren with three homers. ... Latos made his final rehab start for Triple-A Louisville on Monday night and threw 81 pitches before a rain delay. The right-hander has been sidelined all season while recovering from torn knee cartilage and a strained pitching forearm. Alfredo Simon, his replacement in the rotation, leads the team in wins with an 8-3 record.

 
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Scott Van Slyke connects for a pair of home runs en route to a career-high 4-RBI game.  (Getty Images)
Scott Van Slyke connects for a pair of home runs en route to a career-high 4-RBI game. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Los Angeles

S. Van Slyke
AB 3
R 3
H 3
HR 2
RBI 4
Cincinnati

R. Ludwick
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Los Angeles (N.L.) Dodgers
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Chone Figgins, 2B4000121 .236
Hanley Ramirez, SS4010012 .257
   Brandon League, P0000000 .000
   a-Dee Gordon, PH1010000 .288
   Kenley Jansen, P0000000 .000
Yasiel Puig, RF4110111 .333
Matt Kemp, LF3210201 .254
Scott Van Slyke, CF3334200 .278
Justin Turner, 3B5021023 .269
Jamie Romak, 1B3000123 .100
Tim Federowicz, C3011002 .123
Dan Haren, P3000023 .115
   J.P. Howell, P0000000 .000
   b-Miguel Rojas, PH-SS1000001 .250
Totals346106710  
a-singled for League in the 9th
b-hit into fielder's choice for Howell in the 8th
Batting
2B - Matt Kemp (15, Cingrani), Tim Federowicz (3, Ondrusek)
HR - Scott Van Slyke 2 (6, Cingrani)
SF - Tim Federowicz (1)
RBI - Scott Van Slyke 4 (11), Justin Turner (16), Tim Federowicz (5)
2-OUT RBI - Scott Van Slyke 3 (4)
CS - Dee Gordon (5, 2nd base by Hoover/B. Pena)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Figgins-H. Ramirez-Romak, Figgins-H. Ramirez-Romak-Turner-Figgins-Romak, Figgins-H. Ramirez-Romak-Turner-Figgins-Romak-League-Federowicz-Romak
Los Angeles (N.L.) Dodgers
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Dan Haren (W,6-4) 5.1522221 3.49
J.P. Howell (H,12) 1.2100100 1.59
Brandon League 1100200 1.91
Kenley Jansen 1000020 3.46
IBB - Lutz by Dan Haren
WP - Dan Haren 2 (4)
Pitches-Strikes - Dan Haren 94-55, J.P. Howell 22-9, Brandon League 19-8, Kenley Jansen 11-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dan Haren 8-6, J.P. Howell 3-0, Brandon League 2-0, Kenley Jansen 1-0
Batters Faced - Dan Haren 23, J.P. Howell 5, Brandon League 5, Kenley Jansen 3
Cincinnati Reds
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Billy Hamilton, CF4000001 .247
Todd Frazier, 3B-1B3000100 .276
Brandon Phillips, 2B4020000 .273
Jay Bruce, RF2000211 .208
Ryan Ludwick, LF4121001 .253
Brayan Pena, C4110003 .261
Zack Cozart, SS4010010 .221
Donald Lutz, 1B1000100 .154
   Logan Ondrusek, P0000000 .000
   a-Chris Heisey, PH0000100 .228
   Sean Marshall, P0000000 .000
   J.J. Hoover, P0000000 .000
   b-Skip Schumaker, PH1000000 .220
Tony Cingrani, P1000012 .158
   Ramon Santiago, 3B3010010 .209
Totals3127154  
a-walked for Ondrusek in the 7th
b-grounded out for Hoover in the 9th
Batting
HR - Ryan Ludwick (5, Haren)
RBI - Ryan Ludwick (19)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - B. Phillips-Cozart-Lutz
E - Tony Cingrani (1, Throwing)
Cincinnati Reds
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Tony Cingrani (L,2-7) 4.2766352 4.68
Logan Ondrusek 2.1200140 3.97
Sean Marshall 1000100 8.31
J.J. Hoover 1100210 5.14
WP - Tony Cingrani (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Tony Cingrani 97-64, Logan Ondrusek 36-24, Sean Marshall 12-7, J.J. Hoover 22-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tony Cingrani 3-5, Logan Ondrusek 3-0, Sean Marshall 2-1
Batters Faced - Tony Cingrani 23, Logan Ondrusek 10, Sean Marshall 4, J.J. Hoover 5
Game Information
Attendance - 31915
Game Time - 3:26
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Brian Knight, First Base - Jim Reynolds, Second Base - Seth Buckminster, Third Base - Manny Gonzalez