Simon, Bruce Lead Reds Past Bucs

PITTSBURGH – Alfredo Simon pitched into the seventh inning despite erratic control, Jay Bruce drove in a run for a fifth consecutive game and the Cincinnati Reds beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-2 Wednesday night.

Simon (3-1) worked 6 2-3 innings and allowed two runs on four hits and five walks while striking out four. Simon has pitched at least six innings in each of his four starts this season as a replacement for the injured Mat Latos. Simon pitched exclusively in relief the previous two years.

Bruce had two hits and knocked in the final run of the decisive three-run fifth inning against Charlie Morton (0-3) that gave the Reds a 4-2 lead. Billy Hamilton also had two hits for Cincinnati, which has won seven of 10 games since a 3-7 start.

Jonathan Broxton pitched a scoreless ninth inning, despite allowing two hits, for his third save.

Andrew McCutchen had two hits and homered for the third consecutive night for the Pirates, who lost for the 10th time in 13 games.

Morton also had control issues, walking five in six innings while giving up four runs – three earned and four hits with four strikeouts.

The Reds used their speed to go ahead in a fifth inning that included two stolen bases and the second throwing error of the game by catcher Chris Stewart. Hamilton singled in the first run, the second run scored on Stewart’s error as he tried to throw out Hamilton trying to steal second base. Hamilton scored on Bruce’s fielder’s choice grounder.

Bruce doubled and scored on Devin Mesoarco’s grounder in the eighth to make it 5-2.

McCutchen put the Pirates ahead 2-1 with a leadoff home run in third inning, his fourth. Pittsburgh opened the scoring in the first when Travis Snider drew a bases-loaded walk from Simon.

Diamondbacks 7

Cubs 5

CHICAGO (AP) – The Chicago Cubs marked Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday in dramatic fashion Wednesday, allowing the Arizona Diamondbacks to rally for five runs in the ninth inning and a 7-5 victory.

After an error by shortstop Starlin Castro, Martin Prado hit a two-run single off Pedro Strop (0-2), Miguel Montero had a tying single against James Russell and Aaron Hill followed with a two-run triple off Justin Grimm.

Trevor Cahill (1-3) pitched two scoreless innings for Arizona, which ended a four-game losing streak, and Addison Reed got his fourth save. The game drew 32,323 – about 9,000 under capacity.

Braves 3, Marlins 1

ATLANTA (AP) – Pinch-hitter Evan Gattis broke an eighth-inning tie with a two-run double off A.J. Ramos as Atlanta took two of three from Miami and won for the ninth time in 12 games overall. The Marlins are 1-8 on the road.

Braves pitchers struck out 16, giving them 41 strikeouts and five walks – one intentional – in the three-game series. Miami pitchers struck out 37 and walked nine.

David Carpenter (1-0) got the final out of the eighth, and Craig Kimbrel pitched a perfect ninth for his sixth save. Mike Dunn (1-3) was the loser.

Giants 12, Rockies 10

DENVER (AP) – Hector Sanchez hit two of San Francisco’s six homers, including a grand slam in the 11th off Chad Bettis (0-1).

Michael Morse also hit two homers – a solo shot in the second and a three-run homer the following inning – as two Giants hit multiple homers in the same game for the first time since May 25, 2005. Brandon Hicks and Brandon Belt also went deep as the Giants rallied from a 5-1, second-inning deficit.

Mets 3, Cardinals 2

NEW YORK (AP) – Lucas Duda hit a long home run and New York threw out the potential tying run at the plate in the ninth inning to hold off St. Louis.

Jonathon Niese earned his first win of the season, and shortstop Ruben Tejada cut down Matt Carpenter for the second out of the ninth on a strong relay from center fielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis.

St. Louis manager Mike Matheny challenged the call, which was upheld following a replay review.

Brewers 5, Padres 2

MILWAUKEE (AP) – Jean Segura hit a three-run homer, and Milwaukee broke out of an offensive slumber at home to support Kyle Lohse.

Segura homered for a 4-1 lead in the second. Khris Davis added a solo shot for the Brewers, who have won five of six and are a big league-best 16-6.

Lohse (4-1) allowed five hits and no walks in seven innings. The Brewers had nine hits at Miller Park, where the team had been averaging just two runs and six hits entering the night.

INTERLEAGUE

Nationals 5, Angels 4

WASHINGTON (AP) – Adam LaRoche’s tiebreaking RBI single off the first pitch from Fernando Salas capped a four-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning that kept Washington from getting swept.

Los Angeles led 4-1 entering the ninth, and closer Ernesto Frieri (0-2) went in, seeking his third save.

Instead, he left with his second blown chance, charged with all four runs Washington scored in that inning.

Jose Lobaton led off with his first homer of the season.