Reds 11, Royals 5

Call it a plus-three night for Jonny Gomes.

Gomes misjudged a three-run double in the field, but hit

three-run homers in his first two at-bats for a career-high six

RBIs, powering the Cincinnati Reds to an 11-5 win over the Kansas

City Royals on Saturday.

“This game will drive you crazy with its ups and downs,” said

the Reds left fielder, whose six RBIs were a Cincinnati season

high. “A win like this and an individual night like that will put

a smile on your face. It makes it all worth it.”

Brandon Phillips had three hits, including his eighth homer of

the season, to extend his hitting streak to 15 games – Cincinnati’s

longest of the season and the longest current streak in the majors.

The Reds overcame another shaky start by Johnny Cueto to snap a

four-game losing streak against Kansas City.

Cueto (6-1), who tied his career high twice by allowing 10 hits

in each of his last two outings, shook off a rocky second inning to

last six, allowing five runs on five hits and four walks. The

right-hander struck out six and retired 11 of the last 12 batters

he faced.

“I felt strong, and I was trying to throw too hard,” Cueto

said. “(Pitching coach) Bryan Price told me in the clubhouse to

relax. I was overthrowing and opening up.”

Right-hander Brian Bannister (6-4) was pounded for 11 runs – 10

earned – on 10 hits with two walks and two strikeouts while seeing

his personal five-start winning streak snapped. Bannister said he

made the mistake of trying to pitch in the humid, 86-degree weather

on an empty stomach.

“I was struggling physically,” he said. “I like pitching on

an empty stomach, and I was trying to get liquids in me, but I was

feeling a little faint in the third inning.”

It showed in his control, manager Ned Yost said.

“He was over the plate,” Yost said. “When he’s on, he works

the corners, in and out.”

The Reds scored four runs in the first, the first on Phillips’

eighth home run of the season and the other three on Gomes’ eighth

homer of the season.

The Royals bounced right back with five runs in the second, one

on Bannister’s double to right-center field and three on David

DeJesus’ bases-loaded double to left field that sailed over Gomes’

head after he initially took a step toward the infield.

Gomes gave the Reds a 7-5 lead in the third with his second

homer of the game and 12th of his career against the Royals, more

than he’s hit against any other team. The eighth multihomer game of

his career prompted the crowd to cheer for a curtain call.

“The fans here, especially in left field, have really taken to

my style of play,” he said.

Gomes now has a team-high 47 RBI, four short of the 51 he drove

in all of last season and 12 shy of tying the career high he set

with Tampa Bay in 2006. Manager Dusty Baker will take every one of

them.

“That’s what we talk about all the time,” Baker said. “The

name of the game is the team that touches home plate the most

wins.”

Gomes was hit by pitches his next two times at the plate, and

Royals reliever Dusty Hughes hit pinch-hitters Chris Heisey and

Paul Janish with pitches in the seventh, tying a franchise record

for the most times hit by pitches in a game.

According to STATS, LLC, the Reds were hit by pitches four times

in a game for the first time since Sept. 5, 1965, against

Philadelphia.

Phillips singled during Cincinnati’s three-run fourth inning.

He’s hitting .462 (31 for 67) during his hitting streak, including

9 for 14 over his last three games.

NOTES: Kansas City C Jason Kendall snapped a 0-for-21 slump with

a seventh-inning single. … Bengals coach Marvin Lewis, along with

some of his assistants, several players and cheerleaders, the two

radio broadcasters and the team mascot were honored in pre-game

ceremonies. S Chris Crocker threw two ceremonial first pitches – a

football and a baseball. … Reds RHP Edinson Volquez allowed two

hits and had three strikeouts in three innings of a rehab start

with Class-A Lynchburg, his first since undergoing Tommy John

surgery last August. Volquez gave up hits to the first two batters

he faced before retiring nine straight.