By MARK SCHMETZER, Associated Press
CINCINNATI (AP) — Don Mattingly isn’t expecting his Miami Marlins to put together a startling streak of wins.
He’s happy with the patient approach they’ve adopted.
Starlin Castro drove in three runs for the second straight game, Cameron Maybin added two hits and two RBIs and the Marlins won their fourth straight series, holding on for an 8-5 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.
“We talked early in the year about how I thought we were playing pretty good,” Mattingly said after the Marlins improved to 13-20. “We were playing close games and finding ways to lose. Now, we’re finding ways to win. To get back into it, we have to do it like this — winning two out of three.”
J.T. Realmuto reached base four times and scored twice for the Marlins, who won the last two games of the series after losing Friday’s opener.
Joey Votto had a two-run homer among his four hits and four RBIs, but couldn’t keep the Reds from slipping to 8-26 for the third time in franchise history and first since 1934. Votto’s third-inning opposite-field homer to left snapped Cincinnati’s 18-inning scoreless streak.
Each team committed two errors with both of Miami’s coming in the ninth.
A 73-minute rain delay after the fourth inning cost Dan Straily a shot at his first win of the season. In his second start since coming off the disabled list, the former Reds right-hander allowed two runs, three hits and four walks with two strikeouts in four innings.
“That was really unfortunate,” Straily said of his rain-induced departure. “I felt good.”
Nick Wittgren (1-0) took over and struck out four while giving up one hit in two innings. Tayron Guerrero allowed a run in the seventh and Kyle Barraclough pitched a scoreless eighth, but the Reds scored two against Junichi Tazawa before Brad Ziegler came on to earn his fourth save.
“We’re still young,” Maybin said. “We had to figure out how to finish games. Even tonight, it wasn’t pretty, but we figured out how to finish the game.”
Castro delivered a two-run single as the Marlins sent nine batters to the plate in their four-run first inning against left-hander Brandon Finnegan, who needed 39 pitches to get the first three outs. Finnegan walked three and second baseman Scooter Gennett committed a throwing error in the inning.
“It was a (tough) way to start the game,” Finnegan said. “It made it tough on the hitters to come back. … The more we lose, the more pressure we put on ourselves and try to be too fine.”
Finnegan (0-3) lasted 3 1/3 innings in his fifth start since coming off the disabled list. He gave up five runs, four hits and three walks with two strikeouts.
“We didn’t get much out of Brandon,” interim manager Jim Riggleman said. “We had to piece it together. The Marlins kept pecking away. Even when they didn’t score, they forced us to make pitching changes.”
Finnegan left the game after Straily singled to left with one out in the fourth inning. The hit was Straily’s sixth in 112 career at bats (.054).
The Reds reinstated LHP Amir Garrett from the bereavement list before Sunday’s game. Garrett left the team on Thursday and hurried back on Sunday in time to be activated.
Marlins right fielder Brian Anderson came charging in, then made an abrupt left turn and flagged down Tucker Barnhart’s line drive with a diving catch with nobody out and Scott Schebler on first in the fourth inning.
WHAT MENDOZA LINE?
Billy Hamilton’s seventh-inning double boosted his average over .200 up to .204. He has a season-high five-game hitting streak.
Reds: RHP Anthony DeSclafani was scheduled to throw on the side at extended spring training in Arizona on Sunday, two days after throwing 29 pitches over two innings. DeSclafani strained his left oblique in spring training.
Marlins: LHP Jarlin Garcia (1-0) makes his first career start against the Cubs in the opener of a three-game series at Chicago.
Reds: RHP Homer Bailey (0-4) makes his 200th career start in the opener of a three-game series against the Mets in Cincinnati.
© 2018, Forrest Church. All rights reserved.