CINCINNATI – Todd Frazier hit a solo home run and Homer Bailey allowed just one run in 7 1/3 innings, lifting the Cincinnati Reds to a 4-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Sunday in the finale of a three-game series at Great American Ball Park.
In the ninth, Reds reliever Aroldis Chapman made his first appearance since being struck by a line drive in spring training. Chapman walked shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, then struck out left fielder Carlos Gonzalez, third baseman Nolan Arenado and first baseman Justin Morneau, all swinging, for the save.
Right fielder Charlie Blackmon hit his ninth home run for Colorado,
which started the day one game behind first-place San Francisco in the National League West standings.
Shortstop Ramon Santiago went 2-for-3 with a double and scored twice for Cincinnati (17-19), and center fielder Billy Hamilton, making his first start since being injured on May 1, went 2-for-3 with a walk and a triple.
Bailey (3-2) has been under increased scrutiny since signing a six-year, $105 million contract in February. On Sunday, Bailey was aggressive in the strike zone, allowing four hits and one run in 7 1/3 innings. He walked two and struck out six over 112 pitches.
Rockies right-hander Juan Nicasio allowed four runs, two earned, and five hits in six innings. He walked one and struck out three.
Hamilton impacted the game with his speed in the first inning when he beat out a bunt single and reached third when Morneau’s rushed throw sailed into foul territory. Moments later, Hamilton scored on right fielder Skip Schumaker’s ground out to put Cincinnati ahead 1-0.
In the third, Schumaker increased the Reds’ lead to 2-0 with a two-out, two-strike single to drive home Ramon Santiago from third.
Bailey retired the first nine batters he faced and needed just 39 pitches to do so.
Blackmon abruptly halted Bailey’s perfect streak with a solo home run to right-center leading off the fourth to make the score 2-1.
Frazier, the Reds’ third baseman, got that run back with his seventh home run, an estimated 421-foot blast to center, putting the Reds ahead 3-1.
In the fifth, Bailey walked Morneau and allowed a ground-rule double by catcher Michael McKenry but retired three straight batters to end that threat.
A throwing error by Arenado allowed Santiago to score from third, giving the Reds a 4-1 lead in the fifth.
Great win for the team, day off tomorrow, then back at it Tuesday night as the San Diego Padres come to the GABP, for a three game series.