CINCINNATI (AP) - An emotional, grueling road trip could only have ended with an emotional, grueling loss for the Chicago Cubs.
The Cubs scored twice in the ninth inning to send their game at Cincinnati to extra innings, but Jay Bruce hit a two-run homer in the 11th that lifted the Reds to an 8-6 victory Thursday night.
Joey Votto led off the 11th against James Russell (1-6) with a double to left-center. Bruce connected on the next pitch for his 31st homer of the season, giving the Reds their third straight win over Chicago after losing the opener of the four-game series.
That pretty much summed up the Cubs' 3-4 trip, which started in New York with emotional observances of the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That series also ended with an 11-inning game, which the Cubs won but they didn't get to Cincinnati until 5:30 a.m. Monday.
Manager Mike Quade indulged in a bit of gallows humor with the Cubs facing a trip home and a day game Friday against Houston.
``Just what we needed - a 4 1/2-hour (actually 4:01) game with a day game (Friday),' he said. ``That's the way things have gone from time to time. It's hard to take a loss like that.'
Nick Masset (3-5) pitched the 11th for the win.
The Cubs handed Francisco Cordero his first blown save since July 10 by scoring twice in the ninth to make it 6-all. Tony Campana led off with a pinch-hit single and scored on pinch-hitter Alfonso Soriano's double. One out later, Darwin Barney chopped a tying single.
Cordero had successfully converted 16 consecutive save opportunities since the All-Star break.
Reds starter Homer Bailey, who hadn't allowed more than two home runs in any of his previous 19 starts this season, gave up two in a span of four batters in the first inning.
Aramis Ramirez singled with two outs and Carlos Pena followed with his 28th home run, a majestic 461-foot drive on a 3-2 pitch that landed in a party area on top of the batter's eye in center field.
Bryan LaHair kept the inning going with a single to center, extending his career-opening hitting streak to nine games, and Marlon Byrd hit the first pitch 414 feet into the Cincinnati bullpen in left-center field.
Bailey settled down and lasted six innings, giving up six hits and four runs with three walks and nine strikeouts, matching his season high. The Cubs loaded the bases with no outs in the third, but Byrd lined out to a diving Brandon Phillips at second base and Tyler Colvin and Koyie Hill struck out.
``We had our opportunities,' Quade said. ``Marlon hit that ball on the screws. We couldn't cash in.'
Phillips hit his 16th home run, and fourth of the four-game series, in the third to cut Chicago's lead to 4-1. Chris Heisey hit his 17th homer, and second in two nights, in the fourth.
The Reds scored three times in the fifth to knock starter Randy Wells out of the game. Bailey started the rally with a one-out single. Phillips doubled and Drew Stubbs hit an RBI single just over the glove of a leaping Starlin Castro at shortstop.
Votto walked to load the bases, and Wells walked Yonder Alonso to force in the tying run. Jeff Samardzija relieved Wells and got Heisey to hit a sharp one-hopper that glanced off the pitcher's foot to Castro, whose throw to first wasn't in time, allowing Stubbs to score the go-ahead run.
``I started out good, but then I started nibbling,' said Wells, who had won a career-high five consecutive decisions going into the game and was 5-0 with a 3.02 ERA over his last eight starts. ``A hit by the pitcher certainly isn't the way to go about your business. When a team gives you a lead, you've got to pitch better than that.'
The Reds reached Wells for seven hits and five runs with two walks and three strikeouts in 4 1-3 innings.
The Reds added a run in the sixth when Paul Janish drew a leadoff walk, moved to third on Stubbs' two-out single and scored on reliever John Gaub's wild pitch.
NOTES: Soriano's double was the 400th of his career. ... Reds RHP Bronson Arroyo, scheduled to start against Milwaukee in Friday's series opener, is coming off the shortest start of his career. He failed to get an out in the second inning of Cincinnati's 12-7 loss Saturday at Colorado. ... Cubs RHP Matt Garza is 2-0 with a 2.53 ERA over his last three starts going into his appearance Friday against Houston.
The Associated Press News Service
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