CHICAGO (AP) - Even Chicago Cubs pitcher Matt Garza was impressed by the Cincinnati Reds' display of power.
Xavier Paul hit a three-run home run, Joey Votto added a two-run shot and the Cincinnati Reds roughed up Garza and the Chicago Cubs 12-2 on Tuesday night.
``It's one of those days, you just tip your cap,' Garza said. ``The ball Votto hit out, I was really impressed. You can't really say anything about it. It was a fastball that I got in there. You just tip your cap and keep going.'
Garza (1-1) was tagged for a career-high nine runs and nine hits in five-plus innings. He was lifted in the sixth after allowing six runs without retiring a batter. Garza dropped to 0-2 against the Reds this season, allowing 13 runs in nine innings. The three homers he gave up were the most since last July 5 at Atlanta.
Garza said he's trying to grow more comfortable throwing to catcher Welington Castillo. Garza was making his fifth start after beginning the season on the disabled list for a left lat strain.
``That's what we're trying to do right now, just feel each other out,' Garza said.
The last time Garza faced the Reds on May 26, he criticized starter Johnny Cueto for throwing a pitch that sailed over David DeJesus' head, saying Cueto needed to ``grow up.'
``That was over the day I left (Cincinnati),' Garza said. ``Today was go out there and try to pitch the best I can and give my team a chance to win and that definitely didn't happen.'
Tony Cingrani (3-0), filling in for the injured Cueto, pitched seven strong innings as Cincinnati extended its franchise-best winning streak at Wrigley Field to 11 games. Cingrani, from Chicago's South Suburbs, allowed two runs and four hits, while striking out five and allowing one walk.
``Cingrani was outstanding tonight,' Reds manager Dusty Baker said. ``He showed his improvement of what he went down to work on. He threw some quality breaking balls and some good changeups.'
Zack Cozart also added a three-run shot in the eighth and Todd Frazier hit a solo home run in the second inning for the Reds.
Cody Ransom hit a solo home run for the Cubs, who have lost seven of their last nine games. The third baseman committed three of Chicago's four errors as the Cubs suffered their worst defeat of the season.
With two outs in the second, Frazier connected on a 1-2 pitch that wound up in the center-field basket for his seventh home run of the season. It was his first homer on the road this year and first one since April 24th.
An inning later, Votto tagged Garza for a two-run shot. It was Votto's 11th of the season. Votto is 16 for 30 with seven doubles, one home run and eight RBIs during a nine-game hitting streak at Wrigley.
``It's keeping the ball down and fastball command,' Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of Garza. ``I don't think he really had his slider today.'
The Reds added six runs for Cingrani in the sixth. Jay Bruce lined a double down the left-field line to drive in two runs. After Garza hit Frazier with a pitch, Paul followed with a three-run homer to right. After chasing Garza, Cozart added an RBI single to give the Reds a 9-1 lead.
Bruce was 3 for 5 with two RBIs as Cincinnati finished with 17 hits.
Ransom scored on Alfonso Soriano's sacrifice fly in the fourth. Ransom hit his seventh homer of the season in the sixth.
Cozart cleared the bases on a three-run homer in the eighth inning off Cubs reliever Zach Putnam. Putnam left with an elbow injury after giving up the home run.
NOTES: The Cubs suspended Triple-A infielder Ian Stewart on Tuesday without pay for an indefinite period following his critical comments about the organization. ... The Cubs acquired RHP Henry Rodriguez from the Washington Nationals for minor-league pitcher Ian Dickson on Tuesday. Rodriguez was 0-1 with a 4.00 ERA in 17 relief appearances this season for the Nationals, who designated him for assignment on June 4. Dickson, a right-hander, was 2-2 with a 6.88 ERA in 11 appearances with Single-A Kane County. To make room on the 40-man roster, the Cubs designated RHP Eduardo Sanchez for assignment. . Putnam will undergo an MRI on Wednesday for his elbow, Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. Putnam exited Tuesday's loss to the Reds with an elbow injury after he allowed three runs without recording an out in the eighth inning. Sveum said Putnam has been dealing with bone spurs. ... RHP Mike Leake is Wednesday's scheduled starter for the Reds. He is 3-1 in his last five starts with a 1.13 ERA. ... On Wednesday, Cubs starter Travis Wood will try for the fifth time to beat his former team. He is 0-2 with a 5.25 ERA against the Reds.
The Associated Press News Service
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