Facing a pivotal season in his managerial career, McClendon has seen his team open the year with two straight victories for the first time since 1998.
After spoiling the Reds' opener at the Great American Ball Park on Monday, the Pirates overcame a one-run deficit in the eighth.
After a pinch-hitting move in the seventh failed, McClendon inserted Young into the game in a double switch. After
(1-0) escaped a jam in the bottom of the seventh, the move paid off the next inning.
started the eighth for Cincinnati and allowed a single to
. Manzanillo got the next two batters, but Young hammered a 3-2 pitch over the left field wall to erase the one-run deficit.
"Young hit a pretty good pitch," Reds manager
said. "It was a pitch he's hit before. It was down, but it got a little bit too much of the plate."
"I don't know, I tried to throw him a good pitch," Manzanillo said. "He must have been looking for it. I played with him for three years (in Pittsburgh). Maybe he knows my tendancies or maybe he just got me."
McClendon and Young both pointed to the veteran first baseman's willingness to come off the bench.
"We did some things to build up our team in the offseason," Young said. "It's a credit to the ballclub we have this year that I'm coming off the bench. We feel comfortable with anyone coming to the plate. ... Whatever role I play, I want to do what I can to help the team be successful. I'm at the point now that I want to see this organiztion get over the hump. We haven't been able to do that since 1992."
"Kevin came up big," McClendon said. "Kevin accepting his role is the key. He's not totally happy with it, but he has accepted it at this point of his career. He can flourish in it."
Manzanillo then committed a throwing error, allowing
to reach, and
made it 7-4 with his second homer in as many games.
"I had an inkling that he would have a good year coming out of spring training," McClendon said of the former All-Star catcher. "It starts with him being healthy. He has also been more patient. He's not afraid to go deeper in the count and it's paying off. Last year, he jumped at a lot of bad pitches."
"I'm seeing the ball and hitting it, hoping it will fall in," Kendall said. "If it doesn't, then I try to do it the next time. There's a long season to go, but it's nice to come out of the gate fast."
"It was one to the few mistakes I made," Dempster said. "You have to figure there are only a couple of guys who could hit that pitch because there are only a couple of guys who would swing at a pitch up, up and away like that."
The Reds got back two runs in the bottom of the first as
hit a two-run homer off Pittsburgh starter
Ken Griffey Jr. got Cincinnati even in the third with a solo homer to left.
A two-out single by rookie
in the sixth gave the Reds a 4-3 lead. Cincinnati had a chance to add to it later in the inning, but Larson was thrown out at the plate on a double by
Pittsburgh left the bases loaded in the seventh as Dempster struck out Ramirez and
fanned pinch hitter
Wells surrendered four runs and eight hits in six innings.
"He didn't have his best stuff," McClendon said. "His blister bothered him and that caused him to leave some breaking balls up. But he battled. He is showing maturity. He gave us everything he had and gave us six good innings."
Dempster allowed three runs and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. He walked four and struck out two.