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Reds 5, Nationals 2

The SportsXchange

WASHINGTON -- Left-handed starter Tony Cingrani allowed no runs and two hits with 11 strikeouts in six innings and Zack Cozart and Joey Votto each figured in early run-scoring rallies as the Reds beat the Washington Nationals 5-2 on Sunday.

Cingrani (2-0) struck out four batters in the fourth inning, thanks to a wild pitch after he fanned Denard Span for the first out. He struck out Bryce Harper, and after a walk to Jayson Werth he fanned Ian Desmond and Adam LaRoche to end the inning with the bases loaded.

Sam LeCure came in to pitch the seventh for the Reds and gave up an RBI double by Kurt Suzuki to make it 4-1 with one out. Sean Marshall came in to face pinch-hitter Steve Lombardozzi, who bounced back to the pitcher for the second out as Anthony Rendon (who had walked) stayed at third and Suzuki at second. Span then grounded out to end the seventh.

Cozart reached base his first four trips to the plate and then drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth to make it 5-1 against reliever Ryan Mattheus, who came in after fellow reliever Henry Rodriguez walked the bases loaded.

The Reds (14-12), who had just 11 hits in the first three games of the series, salvaged the final game and won just their second road game in 10 tries despite going hitless the last four innings.

The Nationals (13-12) absorbed the loss as starter Ross Detwiler (1-2) lasted just five innings while giving up four runs (three earned) and 11 hits, including several infield bleeders.

Cingrani, 23, in his third big league start, retired the first nine batters before Span fanned but reached on a wild pitch to start the last of the fourth. Danny Espinosa then followed with a double -- the first hit for Washington.

An infield single by Cozart drove in Corky Miller to give the Reds a 4-0 lead in the top of the fourth against Detwiler, who entered the game with the second-best ERA in the league at 1.38.

Miller led off with a single and went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Cingrani. Miller took third on a groundout by Shin-Soo Choo. Cozart then hit a hard grounder to third baseman Rendon, who made a diving stop to his left but his throw to first pulled LaRoche off the base as Miller scored as the play was ruled a hit.

The Reds took a 3-0 lead in the second on a bases-loaded single by Votto following a walk to Cozart.

Phillips had a two-run single to center in the top of the first to give the Reds a 2-0 lead. His hit scored Cozart, who had singled with one out, and Votto, who had doubled.

Jonathan Broxton pitched the eighth for the Reds and gave up an RBI double by Desmond that made it 5-2. But Broxton got LaRoche to pop out to end the inning and Aroldis Chapman pitched the ninth for the Reds.

Sunday marked the one-year anniversary of the Major League debut of Harper. Against the Reds he was 0-for-3 with a walk and scored in the eighth on the Desmond hit.

Harper, 20, made his Major League debut on April 28, 2013 at Los Angeles. He has nine homers and 18 RBI this season and ranks among the league leaders in several categories.

NOTES: Washington catcher Wilson Ramos, in his second rehab appearance with Double-A Harrisburg on Saturday night, started at catcher at Bowie, Md. He hit in the No. 3 hole and was 2-for-3 with an RBI. "He caught six innings. His (at bats) and defense have been good. Today is a workout day for him," Doug Harris, director of player development for the Nationals, wrote in an e-mail Sunday afternoon. Ramos is expected to be with the Nationals on Monday in Atlanta, according to a team spokesman. ... Reds' outfielder Chris Heisey, who left Saturday's game in the third inning, is day-to-day with a strained right hamstring. Xavier Paul, who took over for Heisey on Saturday in left, got the start Sunday in left. ... Washington third Ryan Zimmerman hopes to come off the DL and join the team in Pittsburgh on Friday, according to ... The 2013 DC Sports Hall of Fame inductees were honored before the game. The list included former NBA greats Elgin Baylor and Dave Bing (not present), former Caps' player Mike Gartner and NFL Hall of Famer Willie Wood (not present).

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