Diamondbacks 10, Reds 8
An early five-run deficit did not stop the Arizona Diamondbacks. Nor did they fade for good when their big comeback provided a lead that didn't last.
Chris Young hit the decisive three-run homer and Stephen Drew had four hits and three RBIs, helping the Diamondbacks rally twice to beat Cincinnati 10-8 on Sunday and take two of three from the Reds.
''We're going to be a persistent team,'' Young said.
Drew's RBI single tied it at 7 in the eighth inning, then Young drove a 3-2 pitch from Nick Masset (0-2) into the seats in left-center to put Arizona ahead for only the second time all day.
''The play of the game was the pitch before,'' Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said, ''when he fouled the little, light cutter off, got a piece of it, then he got something he could handle the next pitch and pounded it.''
The Reds led 5-0 after 2 1/2 innings before Arizona scored five in the fifth off Mike Leake, the last three on Ryan Roberts' homer, to go up 6-5.
''What hurt us was a pair of two-out, three-run homers,'' Cincinnati manager Duty Baker said. ''It was a matter of location. One ball was supposed to be in, the other away and they were down the heart of the plate and they didn't miss them.''
Jonny Gomes' two-run homer off Aaron Heilman in the seventh put Cincinnati back on top 7-6.
''We didn't give up after that even,'' Gibson said. ''That's just how you've got to be. You never know. There's no reason ever to give in to it. The notion is the frustration can control you if you let it. It was very good for us the way we hung in there.''
Heilman (1-0) allowed two runs and two hits in three innings to get the win. J.J. Putz got through a shaky ninth to earn his third save in three opportunities.
Joey Votto tied a career best with four hits, the last a single to put runners on first and third with no outs in the ninth. Scott Rolen hit a shot to right-center but Young ran it down to limit it to a sacrifice fly. Gomes singled, but Putz came back from a 3-1 count to strike out pinch-hitter Juan Francisco, then fanned Jay Bruce to finally end it.
The Reds took advantage of Arizona starter Joe Saunders' control woes to lead 5-0 after 2 1/2 innings and were up 5-1 going into the bottom of the fifth, an inning that Leake, the former Arizona State star, never finished.
The Diamondbacks opened the inning with four consecutive singles. With two outs, Roberts - the last player to make Arizona's 25-man opening-day roster - hit Leake's 1-0 pitch into the seats in left-center to put the Diamondbacks ahead 6-5.
''I got a couple of unlucky rolls with infield hits, then a big mistake throwing a fastball down the middle,'' Leake said. ''He made me pay.''
Heilman retired the side in the sixth, but in the seventh Rolen singled with one out and Gomes lined one into the left-field stands to put the Reds ahead 7-6.
Leake, in his first appearance against the Diamondbacks, allowed six runs and nine hits in 4 2-3 innings, striking out four and walking two.
Saunders lasted just three innings, giving up five runs, four earned, while walking five and striking out one.
Saunders walked three in the first inning, including one with the bases loaded, as Cincinnati jumped out to a 3-0 lead. With two outs in the second, Saunders walked Drew Stubbs, then Brandon Phillips doubled to put runners on second and third. Votto singled to right to bring home Stubbs, but Justin Upton threw out Phillips trying to score from second. Henry Blanco made the tag after Phillips slid past the plate.
''For those guys to pick me up was special,'' Saunders said of his teammates. ''I'm just proud to be a part of this club.''
NOTES: Drew reached base five times, the fifth on a walk. ... The Diamondbacks rested C Miguel Montero, whose .500 average (13 for 26) leads the NL, to give Blanco his first playing time of the season. ... Baker needs one win to become the 11th manager in major league history to win 250 games with three teams (San Francisco, the Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati). ... Arizona, on a nine-game homestand, plays the next three against St. Louis, starting Monday night.