Bryant homers, Cubs rally for 6-3 win over Reds
Ian Happ added a solo drive in the eighth as the NL Central leaders recovered after falling behind 3-0 in the fifth. David Phelps (1-0) pitched a perfect sixth for the win, and Pedro Strop got three outs for his 10th save.
Cincinnati had won five of six to stay on the fringe of the NL wild-card race. Eugenio Suarez homered for the third straight game and rookie sensation Aristides Aquino had a run-scoring single, but the Reds bullpen faltered after All-Star Luis Castillo was pulled in the seventh.
Tony Kemp drove in Happ with a grounder and Heyward singled with two out before Michael Lorenzen (0-3) came in. Castellanos then singled to left and Bryant gave Chicago a 5-3 lead when he drove Lorenzen’s next pitch deep to left-center for his 23rd homer.
While Cincinnati struggled after Castillo departed, Chicago’s banged-up bullpen allowed just two baserunners in the last four innings. Rowan Wick struck out four in two innings to get the ball to Strop.
Aquino’s third-inning single drove in Joey Votto and gave him at least one RBI in each of his last six games. Suarez’s two-out homer in the fifth was his 33rd of the season, one shy of the career-high 34 he hit last season.
Bryant’s homer handed a no-decision to Jon Lester, who dropped his previous two starts. The left-hander allowed five hits, struck out seven and walked three in five innings.
Reds: C Curt Casali (right knee sprain) left his rehab appearance with Triple-A Louisville on Saturday with tightness in his left hamstring. … SS Jose Iglesias missed his third straight start with a sore right bicep.
Cubs: Following an off day, LHP Jose Quintana (10-7, 4.23 ERA) gets the ball Tuesday at Philadelphia. He is 6-0 with a 3.67 ERA in his last seven starts.
Reds: RHP Anthony DeSclafani (7-6, 4.20 ERA) pitches Monday night at Washington. Erick Fedde (2-2, 4.20 ERA) starts for the Nationals.
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