Votto, Barnhart lead Reds by Pirates

Published 11:55 pm Sunday, September 18, 2016

CINCINNATI (AP) — As he’s been doing almost every day since the All-Star break, Joey Votto hit everything the Pittsburgh Pirates threw to him on Sunday.

Votto smacked his 25th homer, Tucker Barnhart tied his career high with four RBIs and the Cincinnati Reds snapped the Pirates’ four-game winning streak with a 7-4 victory.

Votto finished with four hits, including his eighth-inning solo homer, as the Reds finally got to Ivan Nova (12-7) while clouding Pittsburgh’s fading postseason hopes and snapping their own four-game skid.

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Votto has gotten at least one hit in 49 of his 59 appearances since the All-Star break, hitting .412 (87 for 211) with 11 home runs and 44 RBIs.

“Who does this with this type of consistency?” manager Bryan Price wondered. “He makes solid contact against all kinds of pitchers — left-handers, right-handers, soft throwers, hard throwers. He always seems to get the barrel of the bat on the ball. I’m glad he’s with us and we’re not trying to think about how to get him out.”

The Pirates went into the game in fourth place in the National League wild-card standings, five games out of the second berth.

Dan Straily (13-8) limited Pittsburgh to three runs in six innings, overcoming Sean Rodriguez’s solo home run and four walks to slow down a Pirates offense that had piled up 41 runs during their winning streak. He allowed five hits and had five strikeouts.

Nova was 5-0 overall and 2-0 in two starts against Cincinnati since being acquired from the Yankees on Aug. 1, but the Reds rocked him for nine hits and five runs — three earned — in three innings.

“I’m human,” Nova said. “It’s one of those days where you either have it or you don’t. I wanted to keep fighting and give my team a chance to win the game, and I didn’t do it. I just didn’t do the job. I guess I left it all in the bullpen. I felt good in the bullpen. I had faced them two times already. Give them some credit, too.”

Pedro Florimon gave Pittsburgh a 2-0 lead with a two-run triple on a drive to center field that glanced off Jose Peraza’s glove before bouncing off the wall in the second.

Barnhart tied the score with a two-run double to right-center field in the bottom of the inning.

The Reds — wearing green uniforms while celebrating Irish culture day — piled up five hits and three runs against Nova in the third. Straily had a line-drive single to right after going 0 for 48 in his career before the at-bat.

“It finally happened after being so brutal,” Straily said. “It’s the most exciting thing I’ll ever do on a baseball field. They can’t take that away from me.”

Brandon Phillips drove in Votto with a ground-rule double to center field and scored on Schebler’s single to left. Schebler went to third when left fielder Adam Frazier misplayed Ivan De Jesus Jr.’s single for an error, setting up the first of Barnhart’s two sacrifice fly balls.


Rodriguez extended his hitting streak to eight games, all during Pittsburgh’s current road trip, with his 17th homer. Rodriguez is hitting .414 (12-for-29) with five home runs and 12 runs batted in during the streak.


The Pirates were waiting to see how their two young starters, RHP Jameson Taillon and Trevor Williams, responded to pitching in Saturday’s doubleheader before announcing a rotation for their three-game series in Milwaukee that starts on Tuesday.


Rodriguez’s sixth-inning home run was the 239th allowed by Cincinnati pitchers this season, tying the National League record set by the 2001 Rockies. The record of 241 was set by the 1996 Tigers.


Pirates: RHP Tyler Glasnow was hit on his inner left foot by a sharp line drive off the bat of Adam Duvall in the sixth inning. A trainer took a quick look, but Glasnow stayed in the game.

Reds: After skipping a scheduled bullpen session on Friday, RHP Homer Bailey threw one on Sunday. Bailey hasn’t pitched since Aug. 28 because of biceps soreness.


Pirates: After getting Monday off, Pittsburgh continues its 11-game road trip on Tuesday with the first of three games in Milwaukee. The Pirates have yet to announce a rotation for the series.

Reds: Tim Adleman (2-4) is Cincinnati’s scheduled starter in Monday’s opener of a three-game series against the Cubs in Chicago, the beginning of an 11-day, 10-game road trip.