- Sports & Recreation
- Cincinnati Reds
- Oakland Athletics
By Jeff Wallner, The Sports Xchange August 6, 2013 10:21 PM
CINCINNATI -- Mat Latos, facing the Oakland Athletics for the first time in his career, allowed four hits in 7 1/3 innings and Jay Bruce hit his 23rd home run, lifting the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-1 victory in the opener of a two-game interleague series on Tuesday night at Great American Ball Park. Derek Norrris' pinch-homer in the ninth off Aroldis Chapman snapped Oakland's 18-inning scoreless streak. But the A's, who avoided being shut out for the third time in six games, went 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position and left eight runners on base. Latos (11-3) needed 26 pitches to get through the first inning but cruised after that. He walked three and had three strikeouts. Reds leadoff batter Shin-Soo Choo went 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. He reached base four times and scored twice. The A's had one final scoring chance when Jed Lowrie doubled with one out in the seventh. But J.J. Hoover retired the next two batters to end the threat. Chapman struck out three batters in the ninth for his 26th save. Bruce put Cincinnati on the board with a line drive home run to left center, making the score 1-0 in the second. Oakland's Eric Sogard doubled with one out in the first and Coco Crisp tripled with one out in the third, but neither scored. Oakland loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth, but Yoenis Cespedes grounded into a force play to end the inning. In the third, Choo walked and later scored on Brandon Phillips' RBI single making the score 2-0. A's starter Dan Strailey pitched just four innings, allowing two runs and six hits. Cincinnati scored its third run on an error when Jerry Blevins fielded Derrick Robinson's sacrifice bunt and threw over first baseman Brandon Moss' head, allowing Choo to score. NOTES: Oakland breathed a sigh of relief that RHP Bartolo Colon was not among the players suspended this week for use of performance-enhancing drugs. Colon, who was suspended 50 games last year for PED use linked to the Biogenesis clinic, is 14-3 this season with a 2.50 ERA in 22 starts. "That would've been quite the loss for us," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "I think everybody had the same feeling ... that he had already done his time for that." ... Reds RHP Jonathan Broxton is expected to be reinstated from the disabled list on Wednesday. Broxton, the primary setup man in the bullpen, has been on the DL since June 15 with a strained right elbow. ... Tuesday marked Oakland's first appearance at Great American Ball Park and the first time facing the Reds on the road since 2002.