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Fast start, solid pitching fuel Reds past reeling Mets

May 11, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Cincinnati Reds left fielder Jake Fraley (27) hits an RBI single against the New York Mets during the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Four pitchers combined on a six-hit shutout and Spencer Steer added a solo home run as the Cincinnati Reds cruised to a 5-0 win over the visiting New York Mets in the rubber match of the three-game series Thursday.

Right-hander Ben Lively (1-0), who was recalled from Triple-A on Tuesday, earned his first major league win since Sept. 29, 2017. He scattered four hits over three innings of relief.

Starter Derek Law served as the opener while Lively, Lucas Sims and Kevin Herget combined to finish the game. Herget allowed two hits over three innings to earn his first career save.

The Reds earned their first series win over the Mets since 2021.

New York has dropped 13 of its last 17 games and hasn’t won a series since taking two of three from the Los Angeles Dodgers on April 17-19.

The Reds jumped on Mets starter Kodai Senga (4-2) for four runs with two outs in the first inning. After allowing a leadoff double to Jonathan India, Senga retired the next two batters and was on the verge of getting out of the inning.

But the next five Reds reached, starting with Jake Fraley’s RBI single to center field that scored India for the first run. Tyler Stephenson singled and Nick Senzel followed with a run-scoring double to right field for a 2-0 lead. Kevin Newman drove in a pair with a single to left field that capped the big inning against Senga and gave Cincinnati a 4-0 lead.

The Mets have been outscored 34-9 this season in the first inning.

Law was replaced by Lively, who was making his first major league appearance since 2019. Lively, Cincinnati’s fourth-round pick in 2013, induced Starling Marte to ground into a fielder’s choice before striking out Daniel Vogelbach to end the second inning.

Lively worked around back-to-back one-out singles from Francisco Alvarez and Brandon Nimmo in the third and a two-out single from Marte in the fourth to keep the Mets in check.

The Reds made it 5-0 in the fifth inning on Spencer Steer’s fifth homer of the season, a high fly to the seats in left field.

Reds right fielder Henry Ramos punctuated the shutout with his first career outfield assist in the seventh inning. He threw out Alvarez while he was trying to score from second base on a two-out single by Francisco Lindor.

–Field Level Media