's timing was perfect.
Bruce hit a go-ahead single as a pinch-hitter in his return from the disabled list and
homered to help the
3-1 on Monday night.
Making his first appearance in more than two months, Bruce bounced a two-run single through the right side to give Cincinnati
a 2-1 lead in the seventh inning.
''That was a lot of fun,'' he said. ''It was pretty exciting to be out that long and come back and help the team win.''
The bases-loaded grounder barely eluded first baseman
and second baseman Kaz Matsui, making a winner of
''Sometimes placement is better than hitting the ball hard,'' Reds manager
said. ''He couldn't have thrown the ball any better through there.''
Bruce broke his wrist making a diving catch against the
New York Mets
on July 11. After his big hit Monday, he stayed in the game and made a sliding catch of
's liner leading off the ninth.
Arroyo (13-12) allowed six hits and one run with no walks and six strikeouts in seven innings. He also hit a batter with a
''You don't get too many games where you leave the game losing by one and end up winning,'' Arroyo said. ''It was nice to
steal that one back.''
Arroyo is 5-4 with a 2.11 ERA over his last 13 starts. Baker was glad to see his right-hander get rewarded for pitching well.
''Bronson deserved to win that one,'' Baker said. ''He's been pitching great, especially in the second half of the season.
He was masterful tonight.''
teamed up to pitch a scoreless eighth inning.
worked the ninth for his 35th save, one more than he totaled last season, his first with the Reds.
Phillips added an insurance run with a one-out solo homer off
in the eighth, his 20th of the season and first in 46 at-bats since Sept. 2 against Pittsburgh.
was almost as effective as Arroyo. Rodriguez (13-10) gave up just five hits and two runs with two walks and eight strikeouts
while pitching into the seventh inning.
Rodriguez scattered four hits and allowed one runner past second base before the Reds broke through in the seventh.
led off with a walk and
doubled into the left-field corner. That's when Astros manager
decided to bring in a reliever.
''Wandy deserved a better fate than what he received,'' Cooper said. ''I take the blame for that. He was close to 100 pitches.
You can't let your starter lose the game.''
Rodriguez wanted the chance to pitch out of the jam.
''I have no control over that,'' he said. ''He says go, I go. That's what I do.''
Samuel Gervachio was brought in with Gomes on second and Rolen on third. The right-hander struck out pinch-hitter Juan Francisco
before intentionally walking pinch-hitter
. Bruce was sent up to bat for Arroyo. Houston brought in left-hander
, who gave up Bruce's go-ahead hit.
''I'd rather be lucky than good,'' Bruce said of the seeing-eye single. ''My teammates battled all game, and I was glad to
see that ball get through and drive those guys in.''
Arroyo had retired seven consecutive batters and 12 of 13 when Berkman grounded a broken-bat single through the hole into
left field with two outs in the sixth.
followed by lining a double up the gap to the right-center wall, with Berkman scoring all the way from first base.
Back in the dugout, Astros pitcher
fanned Berkman with a towel.
Tejada lined a single to center, too sharply for Lee to score from second, and after Cincinnati pitching coach
visited Arroyo on the mound,
flied out to
one step in front of the center-field fence.
NOTES: The Reds activated Bruce from the 15-day disabled list and recalled Francisco from Triple-A Louisville. Francisco made
his major league debut. ... Cooper said rookie RHP
will start Wednesday's series finale. The start will be Bazardo's third of the season and first since allowing eight earned
runs in two innings in a 14-7 loss at Arizona on Aug. 28. ... Lee needs five RBIs to reach 100 for the fifth consecutive season
and sixth time overall.