Los Angeles, CA – Homer Bailey threw eight strong innings, and Devin Mesoraco and Todd Frazier each knocked in three runs in Cincinnati's 8-2 victory over the Dodgers.
Mesoraco hit the go-ahead two-run double in the sixth inning and the Reds scored eight times over the last four frames. Jay Bruce made a running catch to take away a potential double from Luis Cruz to cap the seventh inning to keep the NL Central leaders ahead.
Bailey (6-6) limited LA to five hits and two runs while fanning seven. The right-hander was lifted after throwing 115 pitches, 78 for strikes.
"I was able to stay loose tonight," Bailey said. "My fastball and curveball were working early and then things slowly came together."
The Reds played without first baseman Joey Votto (inflammation in left knee) for a second straight contest and then lost shortstop Zack Cozart in the opener of this three-game series when he was hit by a pitch on the helmet from Chad Billingsley in the fifth inning. Cozart suffered a mild concussion and will be evaluated Tuesday.
Billingsley (4-8) had eight strikeouts, but gave up eight hits and three runs over six innings to lose his fourth straight start.
"I had good fastball command early. I tried to throw a two-seamer into Zack and it got away from me. I wasn't rattled. They were just able to put some hits together," Billingsley said.
Jerry Hairston Jr. homered for the Dodgers, who lost for the eighth time in their last nine games.
Brandon Phillips doubled with one out in the sixth. Bruce and Frazier had consecutive singles to get the Reds within a run. With two outs, Mesoraco doubled down the left field line for a 3-2 lead.
Pinch-runner Tony Gwynn was on second base with two outs in the seventh when Cruz hit a ball destined for the right field corner, but Bruce raced to the spot and stretch out his glove to make the grab.
In the eighth, Frazier hit a ball to the right field corner. The ball caromed off the leg of a sliding Elian Herrera, with Bruce scoring on the play. Frazier scored on a Mesoraco ground single to left later in the inning.
The Reds added three runs in the ninth, including RBI singles from Frazier and Miguel Cairo.
Hairston homered to left in the first and it became 2-0 in the next frame when James Loney scored on a sacrifice fly from Cruz. The inning could have been worse for the Reds had Juan Uribe not been tagged out at second after over running the base on a single from Scott Van Slyke.
With two outs in the fifth, Billingsley's 89 mph fastball caromed off the top portion of Cozart's helmet. Cozart remained on the ground for a brief moment until medical personnel attended to him. Cozart walked off the field under his own power and was pinch-run for by Wilson Valdez.
"It was one of those games," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Chad was looking good. After hitting Zack, he didn't seem the same. It's always discouraging when you lose."
The Reds have won four straight and eight of the last 11 meetings...In a series of roster moves prior to the game, the Dodgers s selected the contract of infielder Luis Cruz from Triple-A Albuquerque, optioned pitcher Shawn Tolleson to Albuquerque, and transferred pitcher Ted Lilly to the 60-day disabled list...Uribe left the game after the fifth inning due to a sprained right ankle...The Dodgers hadn't hit a homer in their previous nine games.