Tyson Ross struck out six over seven strong innings and the San Diego Padres took advantage of some shoddy defense from the Cincinnati Reds to notch a 3-1 victory Saturday in the middle test of a three-game set at Great American Ball Park.
Ross (3-5) held the Reds to just one run on four hits and as many walks to record his third triumph in four starts and match his career-high for wins in a season.
The Padres managed just four hits in the victory, but pushed a pair of unearned runs across in the first. Will Venable, who accounted for half of San Diego's hits, stroked a solo homer in the eighth to provide the bullpen with some breathing room.
"It's just a pleasure to watch him from center field," Venable said of Ross. "For him to have that outing was huge for us."
Luke Gregerson spun a scoreless eighth and Huston Street worked a 1-2-3 ninth to secure his 22nd save of the season and snap San Diego's three-game skid.
Brandon Phillips plated the lone run of the game for the Reds, who had won three straight. Starter Tony Cingrani (5-2) was charged with the loss after yielding a pair of unearned runs on two hits and two walks over five frames.
Cincinnati's defense betrayed Cingrani from the start, as a pair of errors in the first frame helped the Padres grab a 2-0 cushion.
"We didn't play well," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "When you make four errors, that's four potential outs. That makes it tough on your starting pitcher."
After Chris Denorfia laced a leadoff single, Venable lined a base hit to left that Xavier Paul misplayed, allowing Denorfia to race home from first.
Chase Headley followed with a sharp grounder to third that Jack Hannahan corralled, but his toss to first was just out of the reach of a stretching Joey Votto and Venable crossed the plate to double San Diego's edge.
The Reds answered in the home half, as Shin-Soo Choo worked a leadoff walk, stole second, and moved to third on Votto's groundout two batters later. Phillips punched a two-out single to right to make it 2-1.
Ross stayed out of trouble from there until the seventh, when Jay Bruce worked a leadoff walked before moving to third on Paul's single to center.
Devin Mesoraco followed with a fly out to shallow right that wasn't deep enough to score Bruce. Paul tried to advance to second on the throw to the plate, but it was cut off by Yonder Alonso, who fired to second for the double play. Hannahan grounded out weakly to short to end the inning.
Venable smacked a one-out blast in the next half-inning to account for the final margin.
Hannahan committed three errors, his first career 3-error game ... It was Cincinnati's first 4-error game since May 2010 ... Prior to the game, the Padres placed outfielder Carlos Quentin on the 15-day disabled list with a straight right knee and recalled outfielder Jaff Decker from Triple-A Tucson ... The Reds fell to 36-20 at home ... Cincinnati went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position.