CINCINNATI — Dan Straily gets away with a rather risky approach at the homer haven known as Great American Ball Park.
He gets outs with balls in the air. He collected 14 of them, 10 on flyballs to the outfield, while setting a franchise record during Cincinnati’s 6-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night.
Straily pitched a career-high eight innings and the Reds took advantage of some sloppy Milwaukee fielding for their fifth straight win.
Adam Duvall put the Reds ahead for good in the third with the first of his two doubles. The Reds went on to match their longest winning streak of the season.
Straily (12-8) pitched around solo home runs by Keon Broxton and Jonathan Villar to improve to 8-2 since the All-Star break.
Straily allowed three hits and two runs with one walk and eight strikeouts while logging his 11th start in which he allowed three or fewer hits — a franchise record, according to the Reds.
“It’s not just me,” he said. “I’m the beneficiary of great scouting reports and defense. Home runs are going to happen. I try to tell these guys that if they don’t put guys on base, you’ll be fine.”
“It’s tough to get beat giving up solo home runs. I understand the environment I’m in. It’s you versus the hitter. I want contact. I want the weakest contact possible, and I want it right at somebody,” he said.
Manager Bryan Price has learned that there’s method in what looks like Straily’s madness.
“You just make sure they are higher than farther,” he said. “In Dan’s case, you just have to find a way to stay off the barrel of the bat. You can’t pitch in this ballpark or the big leagues if you try to defend against the home run.”
Tony Cingrani pitched the ninth, allowing Chris Carter’s 34th homer, a two-run shot. Carter just missed hitting a three-run shot in the sixth, reaching the right field warning track with two outs.
Matt Garza (5-7) allowed five runs, only one earned, in five innings as the Brewers lost for the fourth time in five games.
Joey Votto’s solo home run in the first inning was his 24th of the season. He has 28 homers and 91 RBIs against the Brewers in his career, his top totals versus one opponent.
Milwaukee, which went into the game with the major leagues’ worst fielding percentage, committed errors on Cincinnati’s first two batters of the third. Garza hit Eugenio Suarez with one out to load the bases and Votto tied it at 2 with a single before Duvall hit a two-run double.
Brandon Phillips then hit a fly ball to right-center field that Kirk Niewenhuis caught while being jostled by Broxton, the center fielder.
Votto scored on the sacrifice fly, but Duvall was thrown out at the plate trying to take advantage of the mini-collision and score from second.
Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell is running out of patience.
“We were sloppy again defensively tonight,” Counsell said. “Frankly, it’s unacceptable. It’s time for us to finish the season. It’s 162 games, and it’s not over. There’s still time for guys to make an impression. These are important games for those guys.”
Former University of Louisville and Denver Broncos linebacker Tom Jackson, who recently retired after 29 years as an ESPN NFL analyst, threw a ceremonial first pitch. Jackson is a long-time Cincinnati area resident.
Reds: RHP Homer Bailey, who hasn’t pitched since Aug. 28 because of right biceps soreness, threw a 44-pitch bullpen session. He is tentatively scheduled for another session on Friday.
Brewers: RHP Junior Guerra (8-3) makes his third start since coming off the disabled list on September 1. He progressed from 3 1/3 innings in his first start to five in his next outing.
Reds: RHP Tim Adleman (2-3), who notched his first major league win on May 6 against the Brewers, is Cincinnati’s scheduled starter on Wednesday.