Brewers right-hander Zack Greinke had Reds manager Dusty Baker worried.
“He’s a nasty man,” Baker said before Wednesday’s game.
Fortunately for Baker, his starter, Johnny Cueto, matched Greinke’s nastiness.
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Cueto went seven shutout innings to Greinke’s eight. The Reds ended up winning 2-1 with a ninth-inning rally.
Cueto allowed five hits, walked one and struck out five. In his last three starts, he’s given up one run over 23 innings. His overall ERA is 1.12.
“We expect that now,” Baker said. “Johnny knows how to pitch. Once you learn the formula how to succeed, things keep rolling. We expect it. He expects it. Everybody expects it.”
Over the past two seasons, Cueto’s ERA is 2.03 — the best in the majors.
“That was old-school pitching matchup with two great pitchers,” Baker said. “You just hope you don’t make any mistakes. If they make some, you hope you’ve got the ability to capitalize on them. Neither side made any mistakes. It was just that we got one more key hit than they did.”
With hamstring healed, Phillips finds his groove
–2B Brandon Phillips went 2-for-4 Wednesday, his third consecutive two-hit game. His hamstring problem may be fully behind him. “I’m starting to get healthy,” he said. “I’m getting my legs underneath me. When I hit, I squat and get on my toes. When your lower half feels good, it helps. I’m happy I’m starting to get healthy.”
–INF/OF Todd Frazier made his first start in left field this year. “We’re trying to get Frazier in the lineup,” manager Dusty Baker said. “I thought about playing him at third, but (Wilson) Valdez is a more accomplished third baseman. We need that infield defense with Johnny Cueto. Left field is one of Frazier’s many positions. It may be his best position.”
–RF Jay Bruce went 0-for-3 to snap his hitting streak at 11 games. Bruce was intentionally walked in his final plate appearance. He hit .415 (17-for-41) with one homer and seven RBI during the streak.
–RHP Logan Ondrusek recorded his first big-league save, getting the final out of the Reds’ 2-1 win over the Brewers. LHP Sean Marshall allowed a run in the ninth, and Ondrusek replaced him two runners on base. Ondrusek walked George Kottaras before retiring Travis Ishikawa on a flyout. “That’s not the way you want to get a save, obviously,” Ondrusek said. “You want (Marshall) to close it, but I’ll take this one for sure.”
–SS Zack Cozart had his six-game hitting streak ended when he went 0-for-4. Cozart struck out three times.
BY THE NUMBERS: 15 2/3 — Scoreless-innings streak for LHP Aroldis Chapman after he threw a 1-2-3 inning Wednesday. He struck out two, and his fastball hit 101 mph on the scoreboard readout.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “They got me a bottle of Dom Perignon and a bunch of other stuff. It was a good day for us, and we won another series and another get-away day. Just keep believing and keep playing.” — Manager Dusty Baker, when asked if the players were aware that Wednesday’s win was his 1,500th.
–LHP Bill Bray (strained left groin) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 19. He began a rehab assignment with Class AAA Louisville on April 29, but he moved back to extended spring training in Goodyear, Ariz., after one outing. He pitched an extended spring game May 4.
–RHP Nick Masset (right shoulder inflammation) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 26. He could be cleared to throw in early May.
–RHP Ryan Madson (Tommy John surgery in April 2012) went on the 60-day disabled list April 4. He is out for the season.