Matt McLain had three hits, three RBIs and two steals and TJ Friedl added three hits, three runs and a pair of spectacular catches to lead the Cincinnati Reds past the visiting Cleveland Guardians 7-2 on Wednesday night.
Reds starter Andrew Abbott (8-3) continued his impressive rookie season, allowing just two runs on six hits in five innings. He struck out five without issuing a walk. Cincinnati has won 11 of his 14 starts this season.
The Reds, who won for just the fourth time in 14 games, gained a split of the two-game series.
Cleveland, which lost for the 10th time in 15 games, hurt its own cause by committing four errors.
Abbott was pitching with a 1-0 lead in the third inning when Cleveland managed to tie the game on an RBI single from Jose Ramirez.
The Guardians appeared poised to take the lead moments later when Ramon Laureano drove an Abbott pitch to deep center. Friedl raced back and leaped to rob Laureano of a certain home run, catching the ball just above the yellow padded barrier to end the inning.
Friedl then opened the fourth by racing back and making an over-the-shoulder grab of Oscar Gonzalez's drive to the warning track.
Stuart Fairchild and McLain belted two-run homers off Cleveland starter Noah Syndergaard (2-6) in a four-run fourth to put the Reds ahead 5-1.
The Guardians got a run back in the fifth when Gabriel Arias socked an Abbott pitch to deep center for a leadoff homer.
The Reds knocked Syndergaard from the game in the bottom of the fifth when they loaded the bases with one out.
Daniel Norris took over on the mound, and Will Benson grounded into a tailor-made double play to first base. Arias touched the bag for an out, catcher Bo Naylor dropped the ball on the throw home. Votto easily touched home to restore Cincinnati's four-run lead, 6-2.
Wednesday marked just the fifth home win for the Reds in their last 20 against Cleveland.
The two teams will meet again Sept. 26-27 in Cleveland, with bragging rights to the Ohio Cup at stake.
—Field Level Media