By John Fay
The Cincinnati Enquirer
PITTSBURGH - After the Reds got the news about Austin Kearns' injury, it would have been easy to sleepwalk through the rest of the game.
For a while, it looked like that might happen. But after the Pittsburgh Pirates put up a pair of runs to make it interesting, Sean Casey gave a lesson for all you kids out there: Always run hard.
Casey's hustle led to two seventh innings runs and the Reds headed to Milwaukee with a 5-2 victory.
Reds center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. hauls in a fly ball by Pittsburgh's Tike Redman.
The Reds took three of four from the Pirates and are 4-0-2 in series this year.
That tempered the fact that they'll probably be without Kearns (fractured left forearm) for some time.
"It's just unfortunate," Sean Casey said. "I came in here (the clubhouse) in the sixth and heard it was broken. You thoughts and prayers go out to him. You could feel the frustration."
The sixth happened to be when the Pirates, who were down 3-0 after three innings, pulled to within one at 3-2.
The Reds offense was quiet by then. They sent up the minimum nine batters from the fourth through the sixth.
But the Reds made the Pirates pay for a mistake in the seventh. Barry Larkin walked with one out. An out later, Casey hit a shot to the right of second baseman Jose Castillo. Castillo made a great stop, but his throw pulled first baseman Carlos Rivera off the bag. Casey avoided the tag.
"That's why you hustle,' Reds manager Dave Miley.
"That's the only way I play the game," Casey said. "You're going to get one of those every two years."
Castillo's error allowed Dunn to bat. He's been struggling (3-for-his-last-21) but he stroked one into the right-center gap for a two-run double to make it 5-2.
The bullpen trio of John Riedling, Todd Jones and Danny Graves took it in from there.
Graves earned his 10th save, tying his own club record for most saves in April
The Reds jumped on Pirate starter Ryan Vogelsong early. Ken Griffey Jr. singled off third baseman Rob Mackowiak's glove with two outs the first.
Casey, whose parents were watching the game, followed with his third home run of the year. He hit a 2-1 pitch out to right-center, just left of the 375-foot sign.
The homer extended Casey's hitting streak to seven games. He's hitting .517 during the streak, including three home runs, five doubles and nine RBI.
Vogelsong then walked Dunn and hit Kearns with a pitch.
Brandon Larson, in his first at-bat of the season, took a called third strike to end the inning. Kearns stayed in the game to run and played defense in the bottom of the first. But Freel replaced him in the bottom of the second.
The Reds added a run in the third when Casey walked with one out and scored on Freel's triple to right-center.
Reds starter Aaron Harang flirted with danger in the second, third and fourth. "He had runners on behind him," Miley said. "He made pitches when he had to."
The Pirates got to Harang for one run in the fifth when Jack Wilson led off with a triple and scored on a groundout. Craig Wilson hit a home run to start the sixth.
Harang went six innings, allowing two runs on seven hits. He walked one and struck out five. It was his third quality start - six innings or more, three runs or fewer - in four outings.
Riedling worked the seventh. Jones was particularly impressive in the eighth. He struck out the side around Craig Wilson's one-out triple. Graves allowed a two-out single in the ninth.
|Griffey Jr. cf||5||1||1||0||0||1||.235|
Rivera reached first on catcher's interference.
E-LaRue (1), Castillo (2). LOB-Cincinnati 8, Pittsburgh 10. 2B-Dunn (3). 3B-Freel (2), JWilson (1), CWilson (1). HR-CWilson (5), off Harang; Casey (3), off Vogelsong. RBIs-Casey 2 (18), Dunn 2 (17), Freel (4), Kendall (10), CWilson (11). SB-Dunn (2). GIDP-Larkin, Griffey Jr..
Runners left in scoring position-Cincinnati 4 (Freel, Larson, Harang 2); Pittsburgh 5 (TRedman, Mackowiak 2, Castillo 2).
Runners moved up-Kendall.
DP-Pittsburgh 3 (JWilson, Castillo and Rivera), (Rivera, JWilson and Vogelsong), (JWilson and Rivera).
|Harang W, 2-0||6||7||2||2||1||5||103||3.52|
|Riedling H, 2||1||1||0||0||0||0||15||0.93|
|TJones H, 6||1||1||0||0||0||3||17||3.00|
|Graves S, 10||1||1||0||0||0||0||12||4.09|
|Vogelsong L, 1-3||4||4||3||3||6||6||79||9.00|
HBP-by Vogelsong (Kearns).
Umpires-Home, Tony Randazzo; First, Kevin Kelley; Second, Fieldin Culbreth; Third, Jim Wolf.
T-2:58. A-8,579 (38,496).
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