CINCINNATI (AP) — Carlos Marmol blew a lead in the ninth before Darwin Barney bailed him out with a homer in the 10th inning on Tuesday night, lifting the Chicago Cubs to a 4-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.
Chicago ended its four-game losing streak after blowing a late lead for the second straight day. The Cubs let a two-run lead get away in the 13th inning of a 5-4 loss Monday night.
Barney connected off left-hander Manny Parra (0-1), and Dave Sappelt added an RBI single.
Marmol (2-1), who lost the closer’s job after a rough opening week, came on with a runner on second and one out in the ninth to face Joey Votto, who was 1 for 15 in his career against the reliever with nine strikeouts. Votto singled up the middle to tie it.
Marmol escaped a bases-loaded threat to keep it tied. Kevin Gregg fanned Votto with two aboard in the 10th to get his first save.
Chicago won for only the second time in its last nine games. The Cubs are last in the NL Central at 6-13.
Starlin Castro went 0 for 4, ending the major leagues’ longest hitting streak at 14 games.
The Reds lost for only the second time in nine games on a homestand that concludes Wednesday. Long games are their norm — they’ve already gone extra innings five times at Great American Ball Park and had another game suspended overnight by rain.
The Cubs scored their first two runs off left-hander Tony Cingrani, who struck out nine in his second start in the majors. Cingrani was called up to replace Johnny Cueto, out with a pulled muscle in his back.
Scott Hairston had a sacrifice fly in the second. Cody Ransom, claimed off waivers from San Diego on April 16, finally got into a game for the Cubs and delivered on his first swing. He started at third base and hit a solo shot on the first pitch from Cingrani for a 2-0 lead.
Ransom made a nice play to help starter Carlos Villanueva escape a two-on threat in the seventh, turning Todd Frazier’s grounder into a third-to-first double play. He also threw out catcher Corky Miller from foul territory after grabbing his grounder down the line in the eighth.
The Cubs wasted a chance in the sixth, when Sappelt tried to score from third against a drawn-in infield. Second baseman Brandon Phillips got to Anthony Rizzo’s grounder and threw home from his knees. Miller blocked the plate with his left shin guard and tagged out Sappelt.
NOTES: Reds reliever Jonathan Broxton said his right hand — hit by a line drive on Monday night — had recovered and he was available to pitch. … LH reliever Sean Marshall played catch on Tuesday, a day after he started his rehab stint by throwing one inning for Triple-A Louisville. Marshall, disabled by shoulder tendinitis, said he felt fine a day after his outing. … The last Cubs player to homer in his first at-bat with Chicago was Castro on May 7, 2010, also in Cincinnati. … Manager Dale Sveum said before the game that he has no plans to make Marmol the full-time closer yet. Marmol has pitched well since moving out of the job.
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