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Reds take two of three from Pirates with 6-3 win

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Kris Negron hit his first career home run, and All-Star Todd Frazier added a two-run shot as the Cincinnati Reds rolled into the break with a 6-3 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday.

Negron, who was called up from Triple-A Louisville on Thursday for his first appearance in the majors since playing four games in 2012, celebrated his first major league start with a three-run, opposite-field homer to right off of Francisco Liriano in the second inning. The RBIs were also the first of his career, and the hit was his second.

Frazier lined a drive just inside the right-field foul pole on the first pitch from Vance Worley in the sixth to help the Pirates finish 2-5 on their road trip.

The Reds went 8-3 on their 11-game homestand against Milwaukee, the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh to finish the first half 10-0-1 in series against those Central Division-opponents. They are 0-3 in series against St. Louis.

Johnny Cueto, another Reds All-Star, overcame Neil Walker's home run and a 56-minute rain delay in the fifth to last six innings. Cueto (10-6) allowed five hits and three runs with two walks and seven strikeouts. He also hit a batter.

Jubo Diaz pitched the seventh, and Jonathan Broxton worked the eighth before Aroldis Chapman struck out the side in the ninth for his 21st save.

Chapman's fanning of leadoff batter Pedro Alvarez extended his record strikeout streak to 41 appearances.

Liriano's start was his first since June 10 against Chicago, when he strained his left oblique strain. He tied his season high by issuing six walks for the second time in three starts.

Liriano (1-7) lasted four innings, allowing three hits and three runs with four strikeouts and a wild pitch. He left the bases loaded in two of his four innings.

Two of Pittsburgh's All-Stars got the Pirates on the board. Andrew McCutchen tripled and scored the Pirates' first run on Walker's groundout in the fourth. All-Star backup Josh Harrison made it a one-run game with an RBI single in the fifth.

Devin Mesoraco drove in Jay Bruce from first base with a double off the left-center field wall in the fifth, but Walker snapped a 0-for-12 slump with his 13th homer leading off the sixth.

NOTES: The Pirates optioned INF Matt Hague to Triple-A Indianapolis to make room for Liriano. ... Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said Liriano will start Pittsburgh's first game after the break on Friday at home against Colorado. ... According to Elias Sports Bureau, as reported by the Pirates, McCutchen on Saturday became the first player in franchise history to hit tying and go-ahead home runs in the ninth inning or later of the same game. ... Reds IF Ramon Santiago was available but his left shoulder was sore after his attempt at a diving backhand stop of Travis Snider's grounder on Saturday. ... Reds RHP Alfredo Simon was named to the NL All-Star team as an injury replacement.

 

 

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