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Cincinnati (45-42) «20000002x490

Bruce ends slump, homers in eighth as Reds rally for win

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Jay Bruce had hit the ball hard twice, only to see the worst slump of his career get deeper. He finally ended it with a hit that nobody was going to take away.

Bruce emerged from his 0-for-26 skid with a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning on Sunday, rallying Mat Latos and the Cincinnati Reds over the Milwaukee Brewers 4-2.

Bruce flied out to the wall in center field and lined out to center earlier in the game, so he took a little confidence into his game-changing at-bat.

"I knew I wasn't going to go 0-for-my-career," Bruce said. "I'd been making hard contact. I really didn't feel like I was 0-for-so-much."

The Reds gained a game on the NL Central leaders by taking two of three in their series, moving to six back. Cincinnati has won 10 of 15 overall.

"That could have easily gone the other way," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "We really didn't want to lose ground on this team."

The Brewers have lost five of six but still have the NL's best record and a comfortable lead.

Bruce hit a two-run shot with one out off left-hander Will Smith (1-2), who took over for Yovani Gallardo. Smith hadn't allowed a homer to a left-handed batter all season, holding them to a .143 average.

The matchup with the slumping Bruce seemed to favor Milwaukee in every way.

"It's a crazy game," Bruce said. "You can't be surprised by anything that happens in the game of baseball."

Smith got ahead 1-2 in the count, then threw a fastball that was up. Bruce pulled it to right field, the part of Great American Ball Park closest to the Ohio River.

"He's given a lot of people trouble," Price said of Smith. "He made a mistake. You do that and he's going to hit the ball in that creek out there."

A replay review overturned Ramon Santiago's inside-the-park homer in the Reds second.

A fan reached his mitt onto the field and hit right fielder Logan Schafer's glove as he tried to catch the fly ball in front of the wall. The umpires initially ruled the ball in play, and Santiago circled the bases as Schafer and the ball fell to the ground.

Following a 3-minute, 46-second review, Santiago was ruled out because of the fan's interference.

Latos (2-1) allowed two runs and four hits in a season-high eight innings. Jonathan Broxton pitched the ninth for his sixth save in eight chances. Closer Aroldis Chapman wasn't available because he slightly pulled a hamstring while running in the outfield before the game.

Both teams were missing stars.

Brewers right fielder Ryan Braun was sidelined by a stiff back that forced him to leave Saturday's game. Manager Ron Roenicke said the problem doesn't appear to be series.

Reds first baseman Joey Votto got a day to rest his bothersome left leg. Votto missed 23 games with a strained muscle above his left knee and has batted .250 without a homer since his return. The muscle isn't expected to heal fully until after the season.

Latos made his fifth start since recovering from torn knee cartilage and a strained pitching forearm that sidelined him until June 14. He let a 2-0 lead slip away.

Schafer tripled and scored on Scooter Gennett's groundout in the sixth. Schafer also doubled off Latos with two outs in the eighth and came around on Rickie Weeks' pinch-hit single, making Latos smack his glove in frustration.

In his last three starts, Latos has allowed a total of four runs in 22 innings, showing he's fully recovered from the injuries.

Devin Mesoraco had three hits, including an RBI single in the first inning off Gallardo, who gave up two runs in seven innings.

Gallardo was coming off his worst start of the season: 10 hits, eight runs in five innings of a 10-4 loss to Colorado last Sunday. He settled in after a rough first inning. Bruce grounded into a forceout that drove in a run, and Mesoraco's single made it 2-0.

Notes

The Brewers open a seven-game homestand against Philadelphia and St. Louis on Monday. Marco Estrada (7-5) faces Cole Hamels (2-5). The Reds continue their homestand with the start of a five-game series against the Cubs. Mike Leake (6-7), who has won his last three starts against Chicago, faces Edwin Jackson (5-8). ... The Reds put C Brayan Pena on the paternity list and called up C Tucker Barnhart for his third stint this season.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Reds shortstop Ramon Santiago slides into home plate but is called out due to fan interference in  the second inning. (USATSI)
Reds shortstop Ramon Santiago slides into home plate but is called out due to fan interference in the second inning. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
Milwaukee

L. Schafer
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
Cincinnati

J. Bruce
AB 4
R 2
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
 
Milwaukee Brewers
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Scooter Gennett, 2B4001001 .305
Jean Segura, SS3000100 .234
Jonathan Lucroy, C4000000 .329
Carlos Gomez, CF4000011 .299
Aramis Ramirez, 3B3010010 .287
Khris Davis, LF3000000 .258
Lyle Overbay, 1B3000000 .236
Logan Schafer, RF3220000 .193
Yovani Gallardo, P2000011 .133
   a-Rickie Weeks, PH1011000 .268
   Will Smith, P0000000 .000
Totals3024213  
a-singled for Gallardo in the 8th
Batting
2B - Logan Schafer (9, Latos)
3B - Logan Schafer (1, Latos)
RBI - Scooter Gennett (28), Rickie Weeks (16)
2-OUT RBI - Rickie Weeks (9)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Logan Schafer 1
Milwaukee Brewers
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Yovani Gallardo 7822030 3.45
Will Smith (L,1-2) 1122111 2.16
HBP - Ludwick (by Yovani Gallardo)
Pitches-Strikes - Yovani Gallardo 95-66, Will Smith 21-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Yovani Gallardo 7-9
Batters Faced - Yovani Gallardo 28, Will Smith 5
Cincinnati Reds
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Billy Hamilton, CF4000000 .272
Todd Frazier, 1B4120010 .291
Brandon Phillips, 2B3120101 .272
Jay Bruce, RF4213000 .228
Ryan Ludwick, LF3000000 .260
   Jonathan Broxton, P0000000 .000
Devin Mesoraco, C4031010 .317
Zack Cozart, SS3010001 .229
Ramon Santiago, 3B3000012 .186
Mat Latos, P3000010 .000
   Chris Heisey, LF0000000 .210
Totals3149414  
Batting
HR - Jay Bruce (8, Smith)
RBI - Jay Bruce 3 (34), Devin Mesoraco (42)
2-OUT RBI - Devin Mesoraco (25)
PK - Brandon Phillips (1, Gallardo)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Billy Hamilton 1
Cincinnati Reds
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Mat Latos (W,2-1) 8422130 2.41
Jonathan Broxton (S,6) 1000000 0.64
Pitches-Strikes - Mat Latos 96-60, Jonathan Broxton 9-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mat Latos 8-12, Jonathan Broxton 3-0
Batters Faced - Mat Latos 28, Jonathan Broxton 3
Game Information
Attendance - 27923
Game Time - 2:38
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Jordan Baker, First Base - Jerry Meals, Second Base - Paul Emmel, Third Base - Chris Conroy