CINCINNATI (AP) Spencer Steer and Will Benson homered, Hunter Greene pitched six innings of one-run ball and the Cincinnati Reds dealt the Los Angeles Dodgers a season-high fourth straight loss, securing the weekend series with a 3-1 victory Saturday night.

After outlasting the Dodgers 9-6 on Friday, the Reds got some big hits and shutdown relief pitching to clinch a season series for the first time in over a month.

“We know we’ve been struggling with it, but at the same time we’ve remained confident, and we take the field every day believing in what we’re capable of doing,” Cincinnati manager David Bell said. “But the results obviously matter, you know, and it’s important to have what you’re working toward show up and get that feeling of winning. And that can go a long way."

Greene (3-2) allowed five hits and struck out five in six innings. The Reds got scoreless innings of relief from Fernando Cruz, Sam Moll and closer Alexis Diaz, who retired the Dodgers in order in the ninth for his ninth save.

After Steer’s solo homer in the first, Greene got into a jam in the second. Two singles and a walk loaded the bases for the Dodgers with no outs, but they came away with just one run as Greene got Jason Heyward to hit into a double-play after an eight-pitch at-bat, and Kiké Hernández grounded out.

“I think it was important to the team to keep the momentum on our side,” Greene said of escaping the 32-pitch inning.

With two outs in the second, Benson crushed a fastball from Buehler 411 feet into the upper deck in left field for a 2-1 Cincinnati lead. Elly De La Cruz drove in another run with a single in the sixth.

The Dodgers threatened again in the sixth when Shohei Ohtani cracked a one-out triple into the right-field corner, but he was stranded there when Greene got Freddie Freeman and Will Smith on flyouts. Ohtani struck out in his other three plate appearances.

Los Angeles got a second straight decent outing from Walker Buehler (1-2), who allowed three runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings.

“I don’t know the answer to why we’re in a lull," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “I think you can sort of dissect each game and then figure out whether it was situational hitting or we didn’t take good at-bats or giving credit to the opposing staff. I thought today Hunter threw the baseball well.”

The Reds won back-to-back games for the first time since April 23-24.


Ohtani has been slowed by a bruised hamstring suffered during the last Dodgers homestand, Roberts said, and has been told to “be smart with it.” Ohtani was clearly not at full speed when he legged out his triple.


The Dodgers send RHP Yoshinobu Yamamoto (5-1, 3.17 ERA) to the mound against Reds LHP Brent Suter for the series finale Sunday. Game time was changed to 12:10 p.m. EDT from 1:40 p.m. because severe weather is predicted.



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