Reds pull away from Cardinals with three runs in the eighth inning
ST. LOUIS - The St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds went back-and-forth for seven innings Tuesday before the Reds broke the game open with three runs in the top of the eighth. All three Reds' runs scored in the inning came with two outs on their way to a 7-4 win.
Cardinals' catcher Yadier Molina put St. Louis on the scoreboard with a solo home run to left field in the bottom of the second inning.
The Reds came back and took the lead 2-1 in the top of the third inning on an Adam Duvall two-run single that scored Billy Hamilton and Zack Cozart. Cincinnati added a third run in the inning when Tucker Barnhart grounded out to Cardinals' starter Mike Leake and Scott Schebler scored to push the Reds' advantage to 3-1.
St. Louis trimmed Cincinnati's edge to 3-2 in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jedd Gyorko hit into a double play with the bases loaded and Brandon Moss came home to score from third base.
The Cardinals' climb back continued into the fifth inning when Matt Holliday knocked a solo home run to left field to tie the score at 3-3.
But the Reds responded in the seventh inning thanks to an RBI single from their star Joey Votto. Votto's hit brought in Hamilton to put Cincinnati on top by a count of 4-3.
St. Louis tied the score for the second time in the game in the seventh inning, this time at 4-4, on a Brandon Moss RBI single to right field that sent home Holliday from second base.
But the game unraveled for the Cardinals and relief pitcher Matt Bowman with two outs in the top of the eighth. Bowman allowed a two-out double to Barnhart who was brought home one batter later on an RBI double by Tyler Holt. Holt's hit put the Reds in front for good at 5-4. Cincinnati added two more runs in the inning, first on an RBI infield single from Hamilton that brought in Holt, then on a Cozart RBI single to score Hamillton. The Reds led 7-4 after seven and a half innings and they would go on to win the game by that score.
The loss did provide the Cardinals with a chance to look toward the future as St. Louis' top prospect, pitcher Alex Reyes, threw a scoreless ninth inning in his major league debut.
Michael Lorenzen, who allowed one run in two innings of work, earned his second win of the year to boost his season mark to 2-0.
Bowman took the loss for the Cardinals to fall to 1-4 on the season.
Raisel Islesias, who tossed a scoreless ninth inning for the Reds, picked up his first save of the season.
The rubber game of the Cardinals' three-game series with the Reds is set for Wednesday night at 6:15 p.m.