HOUSTON (Ticker) --
's insurance home run in the top of the ninth inning proved critical for the
Freel's solo homer as a pinch hitter against
in the top of the ninth gave Cincinnati a two-run lead and
did just enough to close out the contest as the Reds edged the
Cincinnati held a 3-2 lead before Freel smacked a homer against Wagner, a one-out shot to left field. On Wednesday, Freel became just the fifth player to hit his first career homer against Arizona's
. Wagner had not allowed a run in his last 21 innings.
"I faced (Wagner) in (the) spring three or four years ago and he threw three fastballs right by me," Freel said. "I was looking fastball and he left it over the plate. I don't have much power. It was his fastball."
"We were going to use him defensively, regardless," Reds interim manager Dave Miley said of Freel. "When they brought in Wags, that's when we went for the switch."
Reitsma allowed a one-out single to
in the bottom of the frame before
grounded into a forceout at second.
, each of whom had been 0-for-4, followed with consecutive singles to plate Berkman, but Reitsma induced
to fly out to left to end the contest.
It was Reitsma's fourth save in his last five appearances.
Making his second start of the season,
(1-1) allowed two runs and five hits in six innings to record the win. He was rocked for five runs and six hits in five innings in a loss to Houston on Saturday.
"Mechanically, I was able to get in a groove," Etherton said. "Last week, I was pulling off the ball and not hitting my spots."
(10-11), who had been unbeaten in six lifetime decisions against the Reds, gave up three runs and five hits in seven innings.
"I felt good tonight," said Miller, who had a personal three-game winning streak snapped. "I had good command. This is the best I've felt all year, mechanically. It was just a couple of batters in a row, that's what hurt me."
Miller held a 2-1 edge before giving up a leadoff single to
in the seventh.
moved Casey to third with a double and
drove him in with a groundout.
produced the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly to right.
"Miller pitched good. He had good stuff," Astros manager
said. "They just got a couple of hits and that sacrifice fly. We had some chances. We just didn't get the hits when we needed them."
Reds rookie reliever
loaded the bases with one out but struck out
to ground into a force play at second to preserve the lead.
"It's a dream come true," said
, a Texas native who was named after former Astro
. "I've watched these guys since I was a kid. I've even played these guys on video games. I went to school a mile down the road (at University of Houston). I played here in the College Classic. Being a professional, you have to put that aside. When I got through the inning, it was fun. It wasn't too fun when I was in it."
"Ryan really pitched out of the biggest jam since I've been here," Miley said. "To get the groundout and the strikeout were huge. The plan was to bring in (Ryan) Wagner for two and Reitsma for one. It worked out, but it was hairy."
Cincinnati got on the board in the top of the first on a sacrifice fly by Casey before Houston tied it in the third on an RBI double by Berkman.
The Astros took their only lead on a run-scoring double by Biggio in the fifth.
, who became the 14th player in major league history to play 2,000 games at shortstop, left the game following the third inning after straining his left ring finger on a swing. X-rays were inconclusive and he will return to Cincinnati and see a doctor over the weekend.