Wednesday, June 18, 2014
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Reds 6, Pirates 5

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[June 18, 2014]  Reds 6, Pirates 5: Todd Frazier hit a tiebreaking solo homer in the top of the ninth as visiting Cincinnati downed Pittsburgh to win for the fifth time in the last six contests.

After the Reds saw their three-run seventh-inning lead evaporate, Frazier smacked a 2-0 fastball from Jason Grilli (0-2) off the back wall in straightaway center for his team-leading 16th home run to lead off the ninth. Logan Ondrusek (2-2) tossed 1 1/3 innings to get the decision while Aroldis Chapman stranded a pair of runners in the ninth for his 12th save, but not before Clint Barmes flew out to the warning track to end the game.

Joey Votto drove in three runs, Billy Hamilton had three hits and Frazier added two more as the Reds (34-35) moved one game with .500 for the first time since May 4. Gregory Polanco went 1-for-4 to become the first Pirate since Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente in 1955 to hit safely in each of his first seven major-league games while Josh Harrison (career high-tying four hits) and Russell Martin (reached base four times) each finished with two RBIs.

Cincinnati scored in the opening frame for the fifth straight game as Hamilton led off with a double, stole third and came home on Votto’s single to right. After starting a 4-3 double play to help Pittsburgh get out of the top half of the second, Harrison evened it up when he doubled to the warning track into the gap in right-center to plate Martin.

After Martin drew a bases-loaded walk in the third, the Reds pulled ahead when Ryan Ludwick singled home a run and Brayan Pena pushed across Jay Bruce with a fielder's choice on the next pitch in the fourth. Votto made it 5-2 with a two-run single in the top of the seventh, but the Pirates rallied in the bottom half when Ike Davis, Martin and Harrison all singled up the middle to bring in a run to forge the third tie of the game.

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GAME NOTEBOOK: Pittsburgh CF Andrew McCutchen went 1-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 12 games, but saw his multi-hit streak stopped at eight - falling short of becoming the first Pirate since Rennie Stennett in 1971 to record nine straight multi-hit games. … The Reds had failed in their eight attempts to get within one game of .500. … Pittsburgh's bullpen has surrendered at least three runs in each of the last four contests.

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