Winker’s HR ends Dodger streak, Reds get 4-0 win over LA
CINCINNATI (AP) — The Reds ended LA’s streak of shutdown pitching with a little of their own, led by a starter who had yet to get a win.
Jesse Winker’s homer ended LA’s stretch of scoreless pitching, and Yasiel Puig singled home a pair of runs against his former team Saturday, leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 4-0 victory that snapped the Dodgers’ four-game winning streak.
The Reds beat the Dodgers for the first time in five games this season, including LA’s three-game sweep in April. The Dodgers are 34-23 at Great American Ball Park, the second-best mark by an NL team behind the Mets.
Tyler Mahle (1-5) got his first win in his ninth start, allowing four singles and a pair of walks in five innings. Mahle showed significant improvement over his April 16 start at Dodger Stadium, where he gave up a career-high 11 hits in a 6-1 loss.
“You can’t say enough about Mahle,” manager David Bell said. “The way he prepared against that great lineup was really impressive.”
The Dodgers got a base runner in each of the first five innings Saturday but Mahle escaped a pair of scoring threats.
Three relievers completed the Reds’ sixth shutout victory, tied with the Cubs for most in the NL. The Dodgers were blanked for the fourth time.
It was the Reds’ first shutout win over the Dodgers since a 5-0 victory at Great American on June 11, 2014.
“We didn’t have a lot of good swings against him,” manager Dave Roberts said.
Winker’s solo homer in the second inning off Walker Buehler (4-1) ended the Dodgers’ streak of 23 scoreless innings. They were coming off back-to-back shutout wins. Puig singled home a pair of runs in the third after a throwing error by shortstop Corey Seager set up a rally.
Puig’s sinking liner to center landed before Alex Verdugo could get to it. The Reds wound up with three unearned runs out of the inning.
“Puig didn’t hit it hard enough to get it to our guy,” Buehler said. “It’s frustrating when that happens.”
It was Puig’s first hit since a bases-loaded single in the 10th inning gave the Reds a 6-5 win over the Cubs on Wednesday.
“I was only happy to get a hit,” Puig said. “The night before, I did nothing. I finally got a hit, and that made me feel better.”
Cody Bellinger had a pair of singles, leaving his batting average at .409. He fouled a ball off his right foot in his final at-bat but stayed in the game and singled.
Outfielder Phillip Ervin was recalled from Triple-A Louisville and left-handed reliever Cody Reed was optioned. Reed was called up Friday and pitched two innings in LA’s 6-0 win.
Buehler grew up in Lexington, Kentucky, about an hour south, and attended games at Great American Ball Park. Between 30-40 relatives and friends were in the stands Saturday for his first career appearance at Great American, which was a notable personal moment as well.
“I’ve been to a few games here and grew up a Reds fan,” he said. “It’s probably a little more special, a little different than other places.”
FINALLY A HIT
Tucker Barnhart singled in his first at-bat, ending a 0-for-13 slump. Barnhart has two hits in his last 29 at-bats and three in his last 41.
Joey Votto went 0 for 3 with a walk, ending his season-best hitting streak at six games. Votto is 10 for 62 (.161) in May with three RBIs.
Dodgers: Justin Turner was better a day after he fouled a ball off his left shin and left the game. He was out of the lineup, but pinch hit in the ninth and made the final out by hitting into a force play. Roberts planned to wait and see how Turner felt Sunday morning before deciding whether to put him back into the lineup.
Reds: Infielder Alex Blandino is close to starting a rehabilitation assignment in the minors. He tore ligaments while turning a double play last July and had reconstructive surgery.
Dodgers: Hyun-Jin Ryu (5-1) allowed only one hit in eight innings of a 6-0 win over Washington last Sunday. He leads the majors in strikeout-to-walk ratio.
Reds: Tanner Roark (3-2) has allowed only two homers in 46 1/3 innings. He’s 0-2 with a 3.63 ERA in four career starts against the Dodgers.