Behind a Ryan Ludwick's run-scoring infield single in the 14th inning Monday, the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates, 4-3, at Great American Ball Park. The loss for the Pirates (72-88) was their fourth straight and dropped them to 2 1/2-games behind in the NL Wild Card race, while the Reds (85-57) now own a 9 1/2-game lead in the NL Central.
The Pirates got on the board first with a Andrew McCutchen home run, his 26th, to lead off the fourth inning, and the Pittsburgh offense kept its foot on the gas, scoring two more runs before the inning came to an end with the Pirates leading, 3-0.
Cincinnati began its comeback in the bottom of fourth with a Chris Heisey solo home run to cut the deficit to two, but then was unable to produce a hit in the remainder of the fourth, fifth and sixth inning.
In the seventh, the Reds completed the comeback. Joey Votto led of the inning with a single but was followed by two groundouts. Todd Frazier picked up the slack, singling up the middle and continuing the inning for Dioner Navarro. Navarro doubled, scoring two and tying the game, 3-3.
Each team's bullpen pitched perfect through the ninth, allowing zero runs. The only true threat came from the Pirates in the ninth when Starling Marte doubled, then moved to third with two outs in the inning, but the Pirates were unable to plate the run. The game went to extra innings tied, 3-3.
Aroldis Chapman lacked control in the 10th. He walked three in the inning before being pulled with the bases loaded and two out. Sam McClure came into face Pirates' pinch hitter Michael McKenry and induced a groundout to end the Pittsburgh threat.
The Reds then posed a real threat in the bottom of the 10th. Pirates' pitcher Chris Resop allowed a lead-off single, then two walks to have the bases full of Reds with only one out. He worked out of the jam, however, by forcing Ryan Ludwick to ground out, then striking out Jay Bruce to end the inning.
Cincinnati threatened again in the 11th. Todd Frazier walked to lead-off the inning. He then reached second on a sacrifice bunt and third on a wild pitch, and stood 90 feet from home with only one out. But again, the Pirates' bullpen worked out of the jam giving up zero runs.
After a few more scoreless innings, the Pirates threatened again in the 14th, loading the bases with no outs. Chase d'Arnaud flew out, Pedro Alvarez grounded out and Jose Tabata grounded out to end the inning with no damage done.
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