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(Sunday, April 8th)
Final Score: Cincinnati 6, Miami 5
Cincinnati, OH (Sports Network) - Jay Bruce launched a leadoff homer in the bottom of the ninth to tie the game and Scott Rolen knocked in the winning run with an infield single a few batters later as the Reds escaped with a 6-5 win over the Marlins.
"It's never over. With the team we have, the pitching staff we have, with the hitters we have on the team...we're always in a position to make a run to come out on top," said Bruce.
Bruce finished 2-for-4 with two solo homers and three RBI and Brandon Phillips also recorded two hits for Cincinnati, which won the rubber match of its opening three-game series.
Aroldis Chapman (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings in relief to get the win. Reds starter Bronson Arroyo allowed five runs -- four earned -- on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings.
Heath Bell (0-1) blew his first save in a Marlins uniform, allowing two runs on four hits while recording just one out in the ninth.
"We played a great game, and for me to come out there and for me to blow it like that, they don't deserve that. I need to be better than that," said Bell.
Carlos Zambrano made his return to a major league mound for the first time in eight months, serving up four runs on four hits and two walks while striking out six for Miami.
Zambrano was ejected for throwing inside at Atlanta's Chipper Jones on Aug. 12 of last year while with the Cubs and announced his retirement in frustration after the game. He later changed his mind, but the Cubs placed him on the disqualified list and eventually traded him to the Marlins this offseason.
Chris Coghlan sparked a three-run seventh-inning rally with a pinch-hit RBI double and Emilio Bonifacio had two hits and an RBI in a losing effort.
Bruce began the late-game drama by taking Bell's fastball into the opposite- field seats. After Miguel Cairo flied out, Drew Stubbs and Ryan Hanigan hit consecutive singles, with Stubbs getting to third on Hanigan's soft roller in right.
Rolen then turned on a four-seamer from Bell, driving it down the third-base line. Hanley Ramirez made a diving grab after a few quick bounces, but couldn't keep it in his glove as Stubbs crossed the plate.
The Reds jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the home half of the first on Zack Cozart's double that plated Brandon Phillips and RBI groundouts from Bruce and Cairo.
Omar Infante got the Marlins on the board in the fourth inning by singling in Giancarlo Stanton, and Logan Morrison's sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth pulled the Marlins within one run.
But Cincinnati restored the two-run edge in the bottom half. Zambrano had retired 12 batters in a row when Bruce took his 1-2 splitter into the right- field seats.
Miami took its first lead of the game in the seventh. Coghlan ripped a double into the gap in right-center to score Gaby Sanchez, Brett Hayes tied it at 4-4 by scoring on a groundout by Jose Reyes, and Coghlan came home on a base hit by Bonifacio.
It was the 12th multi-home run game of Bruce's career...Cincinnati had the most wins on its last at-bat in the National League last season at 24...Bonifacio and Ramirez each stole a base for Miami...Chapman allowed one hit and struck out three.
04/08 16:52:09 ET
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