Reds 2, Cubs 0

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Jack McCarthy, The Sports Xchange
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CHICAGO -- Brandon Phillips broke a scoreless tie with a two-run, seventh-inning home run, and the Cincinnati Reds topped the Chicago Cubs 2-0 Monday in the opener of a three-game series at Wrigley Field.

Phillips lofted an 0-2 pitch to left off Cubs starter Travis Wood for his 15th homer of the year, scoring Todd Frazier. That accounted for the only runs in a briskly played pitchers' duel that lasted 2 hours, 27 minutes.

Reds starter Mat Latos (12-3) worked eight innings, his second longest outing of the season. He limited the Cubs to six hits and a hit batter. Latos struck out nine without issuing a walk. Aroldis Chapman struck out the side in the ninth for his 28th save.

Wood (7-9) allowed two earned runs on four hits in eight innings. He fanned five and walked one.

A potential sixth inning Cubs rally was shut down on the basepaths when Junior Lake tried to reach third following Anthony Rizzo's one-out single to center. Reds center fielder Shin-Soo Choo fired to third baseman Frazier for the tag.

The Cubs got their first hits off Latos in the fifth. Donnie Murphy singled with two outs and reached third on Darwin Barney's lopping hit to right. However, Wood popped to left to end the threat.

NOTES: The Reds reinstated LF Ryan Ludwick from the 60-day disabled list prior to the game. He had been sidelined since sustaining a torn labrum in his right shoulder on Opening Day. To make room, the Reds optioned OF Derrick Robinson to Triple-A Louisville. Ludwick started Monday and went 0-for-3. ... The Reds send RHP Homer Bailey (7-10 3.73 ERA) against Cubs RHP Jeff Samardzija (6-11, 4.23 ERA) in Tuesday's middle game of the series. ... OF Darnell McDonald made his Cubs debut Sunday, becoming the 50th player to appear the Chicago season. That's three away from the team record established in 2012. ... Entering Monday, Lake had 32 hits in his first 24 career games since his July 19 debut. It was the third-most hits by an active player in his initial 24 games, trailing only Kansas City 1B Eric Hosmer and Detroit DH Victor Martinez (33 each). ... Monday's game was the third in a stretch of 20 consecutive games for the Reds. They don't have a scheduled day off until Aug. 29.