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Cincinnati, OH (Sports Network) – Edgar Renteria and Chris Heisey hit solo home runs and the Cincinnati Reds avoided a sweep Sunday with a 7-5 victory over the Cleveland Indians in the finale of a three-game series.
The Reds banged out 11 hits to finish a disappointing interleague schedule with a win, holding on over the last four innings after Renteria’s homer made it 7-2 in the fifth.
Mike Leake (8-4) was shaky in a six-inning start, giving up four runs on four hits and two walks. But he matched a career-high with eighth strikeouts to earn his fifth win in his last eight starts.
Shelley Duncan hit a two-run homer for the Indians, who had a three-game winning streak snapped. Mitch Talbot (2-5) took the loss after giving up six runs on 10 hits in just four innings and remained winless since May 31.
The Reds salvaged a 1-5 record against the Indians this season and went 6-12 in interleague play.
The Indians finished 11-7 against the NL this season. They were trying to become the first team in the history of this all-Ohio rivalry to sweep a season series after winning three games in Cleveland in May.
Duncan’s two-run homer gave them a 2-0 lead in the second, but the Reds went in front with a pair of three-run innings.
Hernandez’s fly ball ended up being an inning-ending double play after Brandon Phillips was thrown out trying to take third base.
Cincinnati’s lead ballooned as high as 7-2 on Renteria’s one-out homer off reliever Josh Judy in the fifth. The blast, his first since September 4 in Los Angeles, barely cleared the wall in right field.
The Indians began chipping away, starting with Grady Sizemore’s two-run single in the sixth inning to get them within 7-4. Nick Masset relieved Leake in the seventh and surrendered an RBI single to pinch-hitter Travis Hafner.
But Aroldis Chapman struck out two in a perfect eighth and Francisco Cordero worked around a single in the ninth for his 17th save.
The teams combined to place five players on the NL and AL All-Star teams, which were announced Sunday. Votto, Phillips and Jay Bruce were picked as reserves for the NL, while Asdrubal Cabrera and pitcher Chris Perez made the AL team. Cabrera, who will be a reserve, was named MVP of the so-called Ohio Cup…Leake matched his final record from last season. He struck out eight batters June 11 in San Francisco…Before the game, the Indians placed pitcher Fausto Carmona on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right quadriceps. The right-hander was injured in the top of the third inning of Saturday’s win. Cleveland also activated pitcher Chris Perez from the bereavement leave list…The Reds return to NL play beginning with a three-game series against St. Louis starting Monday. Cleveland starts a three-game series with the Yankees on Monday…The Indians haven’t swept a three-game series in Cincinnati since June 1999. They went 4-5 on a nine-game road trip.
With Chris Perez coming back from the bereavement list today, nobody will be called up at present to replace Carmona. And Josh Judy, who was called up to replace Perez, will remain with the team for at least the time being.
Expect to see some movement, though, before Thursday, as a starter will be needed to fill Carmona’s scheduled start against the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Indians, who saw their lead in the Central increase to 1.5 games last night when the San Francisco Giants clubbed the Detroit Tigers, will look to sweep the Reds for the second time this season and end interleague play with a four-game winning streak when they take on Cincinnati at 1:10 on Sunday afternoon.
Mitch Talbot (2-4, 4.96 ERA) will go for the Tribe. Talbot has not received a decision in either of his last two starts, and has not won since beating Toronto on May 31. Mitch has worked only 49 innings this year, but the Indians will be hoping that he can add significantly to that number against the Reds, after having seen the bullpen work seven innings on Saturday to secure the 3-1 Cleveland win.
Talbot has faced Cincinnati once before, getting a victory with seven innings of one-run ball.
The Reds will send Mike Leake (7-4, 3.89 ERA) against the Tribe. Leake won his last start, at Tampa Bay, when he went six scoreless innings and allowed four hits in a 5-0 Cincinnati win. Before that win over the Rays, Leake had dropped his two previous starts.
Leake has never faced the Indians.
Cincinnati has dropped to .500 at 42-42, and trail the Milwaukee Brewers and the St.Louis Cardinals by three games in the National League East, as well as having fallen into fourth place, a half-game behind the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Fausto Carmona, who strained a quad muscle as well as had the webbing between his right index-and-middle fingers, will be evaluated further today.
Chris Perez is expected to rejoin the Tribe today, after having been on the bereavement list for three days to attend the funeral of his grandmother.
In Perez’s stead, Vinnie Pestano picked up his first save of the season and only the second of his career on Saturday afternoon with a scoreless — albeit adventurous — ninth inning, in which he struck out the side yet stranded runners at the corners.
The Indians overcame an injury to starting pitcher Fausto Carmona. He strained his right quadriceps in the third inning after losing his balance and falling on his stomach while running out a ground ball.
Frank Herrmann (1-0) replaced Carmona on the mound and allowed one hit over three innings to pick up his first major league win. Vinnie Pestano escaped a jam in the ninth inning, striking out Scott Rolen to end the game, leaving runners at the corners. It was Pestano’s second save of his career.
Homer Bailey (3-3) was charged with eight hits and two earned runs. He fanned seven batters over seven innings, but lost his third consecutive decision.
Joey Votto homered in the eighth inning for Cincinnati, which has lost six of its last eight home games. The Reds couldn’t capitalize in key situations, going 1-for-13 with men in scoring position. They stranded 12 base runners.
Cleveland is 5-0 this season against the Reds and can complete the season whitewash on Sunday when Mitch Talbot takes the mound for the visitors.
The Reds wasted a first and third opportunity in the second, and the Indians went on top the next inning. Lou Marson singled and Carmona sent a bouncer to Rolen at third. Paul Janish pulled his foot off the base on the throw to second.
Carmona bolted down the line to avoid what he thought would be a double play. Instead, he tripped and landed on his stomach. Carmona walked off the field and was replaced by Josh Tomlin as a pinch-runner. Brantley then belted a 2-0 pitch over the wall in right field.
The best chance for the Reds to do damage came in the seventh. They loaded the bases with one out, but Drew Stubbs’ grounder resulted in a force out at home. Joe Smith, who started the frame, finished his 19th straight scoreless appearance by fanning Brandon Phillips to end the frame.
Votto homered to center off Tony Sipp leading off the bottom of the eighth. Pestano walked Stubbs and Votto singled with two outs in the ninth, but the Reds faltered again.
Mike Leake will start on the mound Sunday for the Reds…Rolen is one hit shy of 2,000 for his career…Cincinnati fell to 5-12 in interleague play, while the Indians moved to 11-6…Cleveland, which is alone in first place in the AL Central, has beaten the Reds six straight times.
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(Sports Network) – Back at the top of the American League Central at least for the moment, the Cleveland Indians try to put together a three-game win streak for just the second time since late May when they challenge the Cincinnati Reds in the second of a three-game interleague set at Great American Ball Park.
Cleveland, which was the darling of the AL back in May when it was 15 games over .500 and blowing away the competition, has been brought back to reality in recent weeks even though it is again in first place in the division, a half game ahead of the Detroit Tigers.
On Friday the Tribe scored all eight of their runs within the first five innings, en route to the six-run win over the Reds on the road. Cleveland starter Justin Masterson picked up his first win since April 26 by holding Cincinnati to one run on four hits and a walk. Despite showing a 3.34 ERA over his previous 11 starts, Masterson had gone 0-6.
Bronson Arroyo fell to an even 7-7 on the season as he took the loss after giving up eight runs on nine hits in 4 2/3 innings. Arroyo was tagged for all three of Cleveland’s home runs and has now surrendered a total of 24 over the course of 101 2/3 innings this season. He has been particularly roughed up of late, issuing seven homers in his last two appearances.
"I didn’t have anything tonight," Arroyo said of his lackluster effort. "I didn’t have a sinker, I didn’t have a breaking ball, was throwing 83-86. Kind of pigeon-holed to throwing changeups and straight fastballs."
Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips finished up 3-for-4 with two home runs to reach 1,000 hits for his career, but still Cincinnati has failed to find any consistency the last two weeks, having alternated wins and losses over the last nine games.
The only pitcher in the majors with double-digit losses heading into the month of July, Fausto Carmona is scheduled to make the start this afternoon for Cleveland. The right-hander, who lost his only previous decision versus Cincinnati, has fallen in seven of his last eight decisions this season and is nine games under .500 (51-60) for his career.
Last weekend Carmona surrendered three runs on seven hits and three walks, striking out four in six innings versus San Francisco on the road, but it still wasn’t enough as the squad dropped a 3-1 final.
As for the Reds, their plan is to hand the ball to Homer Bailey this time around. The right-hander, already 0-1 this season but 2-1 for his career versus the Tribe, just returned from the disabled list barely a week ago and was promptly issued his second loss of the season in a 7-5 setback versus the Baltimore Orioles on the road.
Against the O’s, Bailey made it through just five innings, allowing five runs on nine hits and a pair of walks while striking out five in his first action in a month.
Cleveland has taken all four meetings between the in-state rivals this season, that after losing all but five of the previous 18 matchups dating back to 2008. The Reds are a disappointing 5-11 in interleague action in 2011, yet the club is one game over .500 on the season and just three games out of first in the NL Central heading into the weekend.
Justin Masterson allowed one run on four hits in eight innings to win for the first time since April, as the Indians finally gave Masterson (6-6, 2.85 ERA) some support in knocking Bronson Arroyo (7-7, 5.49 ERA) from the game early, and Cleveland went on to beat the Cincinnati Reds for the fourth straight time this season, taking the opener of their three-game series in Cincinnati, 8-2
The Indians wasted little time jumping ahead in this one, which must have felt odd for Masterson after having watched the offense struggle in so many of his starts since April.
In the second inning, with one out, Grady Sizemore belted his eighth homer of the season and the Indians were ahead 1-0. Then, in the third, the Tribe tacked on three more.
Masterson led off with a single, but two ground outs followed before Asdrubal Cabrera went deep to right for his 14th homer, scoring Orlando Cabrera and making it 3-0. The following hitter, Carlos Santana, also reached the right-field seats, collecting homer number 12, and the Indians, on back-to-back jacks, led 4-0.
Cincinnati got one run back in the bottom of the fourth when Brandon Phillips led off with his seventh long-ball of the season, Cleveland broke the game open in the fifth.
With one out, Michael Brantley and Orlando Cabrera singled. After a pop out to shallow right for the second out, Santana singled, scoring Brantley and making it 5-1. Then Sizemore doubled to right, scoring O. Cabrera and putting the Tribe up by five.
Bronson Arroyo left the game, and Travis Buck greeted reliever Sam LeCure with a two-run single to left, and the lead had expanded to 8-1. Buck then left the game with an apparent injured leg, and was replaced by Austin Kearns.
Masterson kept cruising along, even with the large lead, not allowing another hit after Phillips' homer.
See what a guy can do when you get him some runs?
The Indians ended up with 12 hits, including two each from Orlando Cabrera, Santana, Sizemore and Buck, while the latter three players were joined by Asdrubal Cabrera, all with two RBI.
Chad Durbin relieved Masterson in the ninth after Justin had dealt 102 pitches. Durbin allowed Phillips' second homer of the game, but that was all she wrote for Cincinnati, as the Tribe wrapped up their second straight win.
Chris Perez will not be available until Sunday at the earliest, as he has been placed on the bereavement list to attend the funeral of his grandmother. Josh Judy was called up from Columbus to take Perez's place, and if a save situation presents itself, either Tony Sipp or Vinnie Pestano would close.
With the Tigers' 4-3 loss to the San Francisco Giants in Detroit, the Indians move back into first place in the Central Division by a half-game, with the Chicago White Sox 3.5 games back after their win over the Cubs earlier.
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(Sports Network) - The Cleveland Indians kick off the final set in a nine-game road trip tonight when they visit their in-state rivals, the Cincinnati Reds, for the first of three interleague games at Great American Ball Park.
The Indians improved to 2-4 on the week-plus trip Wednesday night, when Orlando Cabrera had four hits, scored twice and drove in a run while Carlos Carrasco tossed seven strong innings in a 6-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the rubber match of a three-game series.
Asdrubal Cabrera also knocked in a run and finished 3-for-5 at the plate for the Indians, who won for just the second time in six games.
Carrasco (8-4) allowed just two runs on four hits and struck out seven to get his fourth win in June.
The Indians, who spent much of the early season in the lead in the American League's Central Division, are now second among the five teams but just a half-game behind front-running Detroit.
Right-hander Justin Masterson gets the call on the mound with a chance to end his own slump, which has left him winless in 11 starts since beginning the season with five wins in April.
The most recent defeat came on June 25 at San Francisco, where the 26-year-old allowed an unearned run on four hits in 6 2/3 innings of a 1-0 loss.
It was the sixth time this season Masterson has allowed just one run in a start, but the second time he's lost. In fact, during the now two-month skid, he's given up three runs or less seven times and pitched at least six innings eight times.
The Indians are 3-8 in those 11 games and 8-8 in his 16 overall outings.
He's 0-2 lifetime against the Reds with a 6.94 earned run average across 11 2/3 innings.
Cincinnati replies with veteran righty Bronson Arroyo, who'll go for a fourth straight win.
The 34-year-old downed Baltimore, 10-5, in an interleague start on June 25, allowing five runs on nine hits in 6 1/3 innings.
The Reds hit five home runs in support of his start.
Arroyo hasn't lost since a 4-1 decision against the Chicago Cubs dropped him to 4-6 on the season.
He is 5-3 lifetime against Cleveland with a 3.61 ERA.
Edinson Volquez (5-3) gave up three runs on four hits over 6 1/3 innings to pick up his first victory since June 7. He also struck out seven and walked three.
The Indians swept a three-game home set from the Reds on May 20-22, giving them a win in five of the past seven meetings. Cincinnati, though, has won seven of the past nine played at Great American Ball Park.