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Reds 7, Cubs 4

The SportsXchange

CINCINNATI -- Catcher Ryan Hanigan's three-run home run highlighted a five-run fourth inning for Cincinnati, and Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips also homered, lifting the Reds to a 7-4 victory over the Chicago Cubs on Friday night in the opener of a three-game series before a sold-out crowd of 40,716 at Great American Ball Park.

Cincinnati (30-18) has won 15 of its last 17 games against the Cubs. The Reds improved to 17-6 at home this season.

Phillips broke open a one-run game in the eighth with a two-run homer off Cubs right-hander Hector Rondon. He went 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 11 games.

Cubs starting pitcher Scott Feldman (4-4) hit a two-run home run, the first of his career, to give the Cubs an early three-run lead. But he gave up a season-high five runs in losing for the first time since April 21.

Luis Valbuena, who was hitless in his previous three games, went 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI for Chicago. But the struggles continued for the Cubs (18-29), who lost for the fifth straight time.

Reds starter Bronson Arroyo (5-4) earned the victory despite not having his best stuff. Arroyo threw 54 pitches through three innings, but recovered to pitch six innings, allowing three earned runs on six hits.

Ryan Sweeney doubled and scored on Valbuena's RBI single off Jonathan Broxton to get the Cubs within a run in the eighth. But Phillips' two-run blast in the bottom half put Cincinnati ahead by three.

With one out in the ninth, the Cubs had runners on first and second. But Aroldis Chapman struck out Anthony Rizzo and pinch-hitter Alfonso Soriano to earn his 11th save.

Arroyo's 14 1/3-inning scoreless streak abruptly ended in the second inning.

Valbuena doubled and later scored on Darwin Barney's sacrifice fly putting the Cubs ahead 1-0.

Moments later, Feldman jumped on a 3-2 pitch from Arroyo and deposited it in the right-field seats, giving Chicago a 3-0 lead. His first career homer came on a 71-mph curveball from Arroyo.

Feldman, who was 4-0 with a 1.27 ERA in his past five outings, retired nine straight batters before things unraveled for him in the fourth.

Votto hit a solo home run with one out. Xavier Paul's RBI single made the score 3-2. Then, with runners on first and third and two outs, Hanigan hit his second home run, a three-run shot to left to put Cincinnati ahead 5-3.

Feldman hadn't allowed more than four runs this season.

NOTES: Votto's home run extended his hitting streak to 12 games. ... The Reds placed LHP Sean Marshall on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained left shoulder. It's the second time this season Marshall has been on the DL with shoulder issues. LHP Manny Parra was reinstated from the DL to fill Marshall's spot in the bullpen. ... Sweeney made his third start in left field in place of Soriano, who got the night off until his pinch-hitting assignment in the ninth. Soriano was batting just .200 in his career against Arroyo. ... Cubs SS Starlin Castro started Friday's game and showed no ill-effects from a slightly swollen ankle he injured on an awkward slide in the sixth inning of Thursday's game at Pittsburgh.
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