The Reds had to survive a harrowing ninth after the Cubs put runners on second and third with two outs against reliever J.J. Hoover before slugger Alfonso Soriano popped up to end the game. The road series win was the Reds' first of the season and first sweep since three straight home wins over the Phillies from April 15-17. Pinch hitter Donald Lutz scored his first Major League run when Votto doubled him home to give the Reds a 5-3 lead in the seventh. Right-hander Mat Latos (3-0) worked five innings for his third win in consecutive starts and second over the Cubs in 11 days. Hoover earned the save, his second. Cincinnati broke a scoreless tie with three runs on four straight hits to open the fourth inning off Cubs right-hander Edwin Jackson, who suffered his fifth straight loss. Votto reached on a lead-off single and advanced to second on Brandon Phillips' base hit to center. Votto scored on Jay Bruce's double to left. Phillips and Bruce came home as Todd Frazier followed with a single to center. The Cubs loaded the bases on two walks and a Dioner Navarro base hit in the bottom of the inning. But Latos escaped when Darwin Barney sent a deep fly to right that Bruce snared while briefly stumbling. Shin-Soo Choo led off the fifth with a single, stole second and bolted for third when a throw from Cubs catcher Navarro missed its target. He scored on Zack Cozart's sacrifice to make it 4-0. Jackson departed after that inning, allowing four earned runs on eight hits. He struck out five and walked just one. The Cubs scored twice in the fifth as Latos gave up back-to-back singles after two outs. What appeared to be an inning-ending fly to center by Soriano dropped for a hit when Phillips and Choo collided on the play.
Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo scored on the play and the game was delayed as Reds' staff examined Phillips and Choo. Both stayed in the game. Nate Schierholtz then looped a single to left that scored Soriano, trimming the Reds lead to 4-3. Latos' outing ended after that inning. He gave up six hits and three earned runs, walked three and struck out three. Cubs reliever Carlos Marmol, whose poor Saturday outing led to a loss, entered in the sixth and worked a one-two-three inning with one strikeout. The Reds extended the lead to 6-3 in the seventh as Votto lined a one-out double to the right field corner that scored Lutz. Phillips followed with a sacrifice that brought home Cozart. The Cubs got one run back in the seventh as Rizzo's grounder to third allowed David DeJesus to score from third. Lutz made it 7-4 in the eighth off Cubs reliever Kameron Loe when he hit into a fielder's choice that scored Frazier. In the ninth, the Cubs put runners on first and third on reliever Hoover after Scott Hairston led off with a single and reached third on a botched fielder's choice throw by Hoover that also left DeJesus on first. But Castro flied to right, Rizzo popped to left and Soriano popped foul to close the game. Choo was 2-for-5 with a run scored while Frazier went 2-for-3 with two RBIs. DeJesus paced the Cubs with a 2-for-4 performance and one run. The Cubs continue their home stand on Monday as the Texas Rangers visit to make up a rained out April 17 game. The Reds head home for a three-game series with Atlanta starting Monday. NOTES: The victory was the 1,599th of Dusty Baker's career, tying him with former manager and Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda for 18th on the all-time list. He is 1,599-1,446 over a 20-year career ... The road series victory came after the Reds lost their first four away series this season. They have not lost five straight road series since 1997 ... Lutz is the first German-developed player to appear in a Major League baseball game. He was recalled from Double-A Pensacola last Monday and got his first Major League hit in the sixth inning as a pinch-hitter on Sunday after an 0-for-6 start ...The Cubs had stolen 23 bases in their first 30 games, second most in the National League behind Milwaukee (27) and are tied for third in the Major Leagues ... Jeff Samardzija's 52 strikeouts are tied for second-most in the National League with the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw. Pittsburgh's A.J. Burnett leads with 57 ... Soriano hit the 375 career home run mark on Saturday. His next will tie with No. 69 Carlton Fisk (376) and with two he'll match Norm Cash and Jeff Kent in a tie for 67th ... The Cubs and Reds meet again June 10 for a four-game Wrigley Field set. They'll play 19 times this season.
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