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National League Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, May 26th (All times Eastern)
Chicago Cubs (18-30) at Cincinnati Reds (31-18), 1:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Chicago - Matt Garza (0-0, 0.00) Cincinnati - Johnny Cueto (2-0, 3.22)
(Sports Network) - The Cincinnati Reds look to continue their hot streak on Sunday afternoon as they try to secure a three-game series sweep of the Chicago Cubs at Great American Ballpark.
Behind the strength of a four-run sixth inning on Saturday, the Reds managed to hold on to a 5-2 win, their 13th in the last 16 games.
Todd Frazier had the game-tying RBI single in the sixth and drove in a pair of base runners on the afternoon. Derrick Robinson pulled off a suicide squeeze play later in the inning to give the Reds the lead for good.
"(Bunting) is part of my game," Robinson said. "I was kind of expecting it. We'd talked about it in the past. That was the perfect situation for it there."
"I'm not crazy about (the squeeze play)," Reds manager Dusty Baker added. "It's taking a heck of a chance. A lot of bad stuff can happen. He executed it perfectly."
Homer Bailey (3-3) was solid in the victory, striking out eight over six innings while yielding just two earned runs. Aroldis Chapman pitched a perfect ninth with two punchouts for his 12th save.
Travis Wood (4-3) was much less effective for the Cubs, allowing seven hits, three walks and five earned runs in 5 2/3 innings. It was the first time in 10 starts this season that Wood did not record a quality start.
Anthony Rizzo snapped an 0-for-22 slump by going 3-for-3 with a pair of doubles.
The Cubs will try to halt their six-game losing streak by sending Matt Garza to the hill on Sunday afternoon for just his second start of the season. The right-hander, who had been out since July 2012 while dealing with elbow trouble, was sharp in his return on May 21, allowing just one hit and no earned runs in five innings of work while striking out five in a no-decision versus the Pirates.
Garza was limited to just 82 pitches in his return but showed little ill- effects from the long layoff, consistently reaching the mid-90s with his fastball.
"I felt great out there," Garza said. "It was a long, long time and it's nice to not only come back but pitch well. You don't want to spend that much time working to get back and then pitch poorly."
The Reds also welcomed back an ace off the disabled list recently, as Johnny Cueto returned from a five-week absence to earn the win against the Mets on May 20, allowing three earned runs, three hits and four walks in five innings while striking out eight.
The triumph allowed Cueto to improve to 2-0 on the season, and he sits with an ERA of 3.22.
The 27-year old right hander is no stranger to the Cubs. He is 8-6 in 18 starts against the NL Central rival with a 3.01 ERA.
The Reds have owned the Cubs of late, winning 19 of 24 contests over the past two seasons.
05/26 10:22:47 ET
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