Reds 8, Diamondbacks 1

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CINCINNATI (AP)—Kyle Lohse and the Cincinnati Reds know they’re in no position to be greedy.

Lohse took a one-hit shutout into the ninth inning before giving up three hits and a run and Ken Griffey Jr. tied Frank Robinson for sixth place on the career home run list as the Reds—who went into the game with the worst record in the majors leagues—beat the slumping Arizona Diamondbacks 8-1 on Friday night.

Lohse (5-10) had five strikeouts and two walks in his sixth career complete game and second this season. He scattered six hits in a 4-0 win over Pittsburgh on May 28.

“It helps when your team scores a lot of runs,” Lohse said. “I appreciated being able to go out there for the ninth inning.”

Interim manager Pete Mackanin, who is 3-1 since replacing Jerry Narron, never considered lifting Lohse, even after the right-hander gave up three straight hits to open the ninth.

“That was one of the nicest games to watch,” Mackanin said. “I felt like sitting in a rocking chair. I was disappointed he couldn’t get the one-hit shutout.”

Arizona manager Bob Melvin said Lohse “used his fastball really well. He had a good slider, and he mixed them up.”

The Diamondbacks have lost six of seven, and seven of their last nine.

Griffey capped Cincinnati’s three-run fifth inning with his 586th homer— 23rd of the season—a two-run shot off of right-hander Micah Owings that traveled 419 feet into the right-center field seats.

Griffey left the clubhouse before the media entered.

Adam Dunn and Brandon Phillips also homered as the Reds won back-to-back games for the first time since wins over the Cleveland Indians on June 10 and the Los Angeles Angels on June 12.

Arizona’s only hit before the ninth was Orlando Hudson’s double to lead off the fourth inning. He went to third on Chad Tracy’s groundout to first before being stranded. Lohse allowed a run in the ninth on three singles and a double play grounder by Tracy.

“I’ve been there a couple of times,” Lohse said. “It just felt good to get out of that jam. I’m just out there trying to do the same thing every time. Sometimes, it works. Sometimes, it doesn’t. I need to worry about just making pitches and not worry about the results. Like that last inning there. A strikeout would have been great, but getting (Tracy) to roll it over was OK.”

For the second straight night, the Diamondbacks were 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position, leaving them 41-for-231 (.177) in 30 games since June 5 and 12-for-88 (.136) in their last 12 games.

“We’re going through a tough stretch right now,” Melvin said. “You’ve just got to try to play hard and minimize the damage.”

Owings (5-4) allowed six runs and six hits and three walks in 4 2-3 innings. He had four strikeouts.

“I felt good,” he said. “I just didn’t get the job done.”

“In this park, you’ve got to be careful,” Melvin said.

Phillips singled with one out in the first inning. One out later, Dunn lofted Owings’ 3-2 pitch 352 feet into the Arizona bullpen down the right field line for his 24th homer of the season and first in 24 at-bats since June 28 at Philadelphia.

Phillips added his 17th homer of the season in the third, a solo shot that traveled 442 feet into the upper deck in left field, giving the Reds a 3-0 lead.

David Ross started Cincinnati’s fifth with a walk. He moved to second on Lohse’s sacrifice bunt and scored on Josh Hamilton’s double off the left field wall.

Edwin Encarnacion drove in two runs with a bases-loaded double off reliever Edgar Gonzalez in the seventh.

Notes

Lohse won consecutive starts for the first time this season … Before the game, the Diamondbacks optioned OF Carlos Quentin to Triple-A Tucson and recalled OF Jeff Salazar from there. … Owings becomes the 372nd pitcher to give up a home run to Griffey. … It was the first time Griffey homered on July 6.

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