Tuesday, July 29, 2014
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Diamondbacks edge Reds in 15th inning

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[July 29, 2014]  CINCINNATI -- Arizona Diamondbacks shortstop Nick Ahmed drove home the winning run Monday night. However, after 15 innings, and four hours and 34 minutes of baseball, Ahmed's emotions were more akin to relief than jubilation.

"It was good to have one fall in for me," Ahmed said. "We had trouble getting hits tonight. Nothing was falling in for either team. Feels good to get the win."

Ahmed's single knocked in third baseman Martin Prado with the go-ahead run, lifting the Diamondbacks to a 2-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds in the opener of a three-game series at Great American Ball Park.

"It was a long game," said weary D-backs manager Kirk Gibson. "Great pitching on both sides. Our bullpen was shot. Now it's really shot. You get into games like this and everybody's trying to end it (with a homer). You try not to, but that's what happens."

Oliver Perez (1-1) threw two scoreless innings to earn the win. Addison Reed earned his 25th save.

Cincinnati reliever J.J. Hoover (1-8) gave up one run on one hit in two innings.

In the 15th, Prado walked with one out and advanced to second on a groundout. He scored when Ahmed, the Diamondbacks' shortstop, laced a single to left-center off Hoover.

The Diamondbacks (46-60) improved to 13-0 in their history in games lasting at least 15 innings.

Catcher Devin Mesoraco hit his 17th home run for Cincinnati (52-53), which lost for the ninth time in 10 games since the All-Star break.

The Reds went 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position and stranded nine runners Monday.

"We've just got to be better than we've been with runners in scoring position," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "I can't be critical of the effort, but we're not producing. The tide will turn. It's just frustrating."

The teams combined for 30 strikeouts, and both starting pitchers delivered solid efforts.

Reds starter Homer Bailey induced 13 ground-ball outs in his eight innings. He retired the D-backs in order in the second, third, sixth, and eighth innings. Bailey gave up just one run and five hits. He walked one and struck out three.

D-backs starter Chase Anderson held Cincinnati hitless in six of his seven six innings, including the sixth, when he fanned three consecutive batters. Anderson allowed one run on three hits, walked two and struck out eight.

Reds reliever Aroldis Chapman reached 104 mph on one pitch and 101-103 mph on several others while striking out the side in the ninth.

"Every time Mesoraco caught the ball, he looked like he was in pain," D-backs catcher Miguel Montero said.

The Cincinnati bullpen retired 14 straight batters before left fielder Mark Trumbo's single in the 12th.

Cincinnati had the potential winning run at second base with one out in the 11th and 13th innings but could not push a run across.

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"We did a good job of stopping those guys with runners in scoring position," Gibson said.

In the second, Mesoraco hammered a 3-1 pitch from Anderson into the left field bleachers to put Cincinnati ahead 1-0, ending a streak of three consecutive homerless games at Great American Ball Park, longest in the park's 12-year history.

The D-backs prevented a bigger second inning for the Reds when catcher Brayan Pena was thrown out at home by center fielder Ender Inciarte.

"We're not scoring runs," Price said. "We're trying to score runs any way we can. I don't fault anyone on that play. We're trying to make something happen."

With two outs in the fourth, Trumbo doubled off right fielder Jay Bruce's glove, then scored on Montero's single to tie the game at 1-1.

Monday's game was barely two hours old in the ninth inning, but it wouldn't end until almost midnight.

"I thought it was going to be a short one," said Montero, smiling. "Feels good to come through with a victory."

NOTES: The Diamondbacks reinstated Jordan Pacheco from the 15-day disabled list. Pacheco can play first, second, third, catcher and outfield. "Kind of a super utility guy," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said. "That's the plan for him so far." ... To make room for Pacheco, INF/OF Nick Evans was placed on unconditional release waivers. ... Reds RF Jay Bruce batted second for the first time since 2011, and he went 0-for-4 with two walks and three strikeouts. "Just trying to do some things, not really to shake it up, but to see if there's a better recipe for success right now offensively," Cincinnati manager Bryan Price said. ... D-backs 2B Aaron Hill did not start for the second consecutive day due to a bruised right hand. He appeared as a 15th-inning pinch hitter, and he flied out. Gibson expects him to be back in the lineup Tuesday.

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