Joey Votto hit a go-ahead double, Jesse Winkler homered and drove in two runs and the Cincinnati Reds rallied for the second straight night to defeat the scuffling Los Angeles Dodgers 6-5 on Tuesday.
The defending World Series champions have dropped six of eight, including three straight for the first time since 2019.
Votto's two-run double to right field off Scott Alexander (0-2) in the seventh snapped an 0-for-15 skid and gave Cincinnati the lead. The Reds trailed by two going into the inning, but Tucker Barnhart led off with a double and scored when Kyle Farmer lined a single to left-center.
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Winker had three hits — including a leadoff home run — to extend his hitting streak to a career high-tying 12 games.
The Dodgers managed only four hits off six Reds pitchers, including Will Smith's home run in the fourth. Los Angeles benefited from eight walks, but left eight on base.
Ryan Hendrix (1-0) got the win for the Reds, who have won two in a row after dropping seven straight.
Los Angeles starter Walker Buehler struck out 10, but allowed five runs and seven hits. It was the ninth time the right-hander reached double-digit strikeouts.
Winker, who hit the tiebreaking home run in the 10th inning of Monday's 5-3 win at Dodger Stadium, didn't waste any time going deep again. He drove Buehler's fastball over the wall in right-center on the first pitch of the game.
It was Winker's sixth career leadoff homer and second this season. Half of his homers have come on the first pitch.
The Dodgers got only one hit off Cincinnati starter Jeff Hoffman, but it was big. Smith hit a three-run homer to center in the fourth inning to put Los Angeles up 3-1 after the right-hander walked the first two batters. Hoffman went four innings with three strikeouts and five walks.
The Reds responded with a pair in the fifth to tie it 3-all on an RBI grounder by Tyler Stephenson and Winker's single. Los Angeles regained the lead with Matt Beaty's two-run single to right.
STARTING OFF WITH A BANG
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Winker’s leadoff homer was the fourth by the Reds this season. Tyler Naquin has the other two.
Cincinnati is the fifth team since 1974 to have four leadoff homers in April, according to Sportradar. The others were the 2017 Houston Astros, 2013 Seattle Mariners, 2000 Toronto Blue Jays and 1996 Baltimore Orioles.
Reds: 3B Mike Moustakas (illness unrelated to COVID-19) was activated off the injured list and OF Mark Payton was optioned to the alternate training site. ... SS Eugenio Suárez, hitless in his last 20 plate appearances, got the night off.
Dodgers: 1B Cody Bellinger recently jogged for the first time since fracturing his left fibula. He will head to Arizona later in the week to continue his rehab at the alternate site. ... RHP Joe Kelly (shoulder inflammation) will have another outing in Arizona on Wednesday. He could rejoin the team during the upcoming 10-game road trip. ... OF AJ Pollock was out of the lineup for the second straight game due to food poisoning.
Trevor Bauer received his NL Cy Young Award from Reds pitching coach Derek Johnson before the game. The right-hander was Cincinnati's first Cy Young winner and said it was special to celebrate the occasion with former teammates in town.
“We knew they were coming at the end of the month and it made sense to get it,” Bauer said. “For an organization that has been around longer than any other, I’m happy to be able to bring it to the organization.”
Bauer signed with the Dodgers during the offseason. He spent 1 1/2 seasons in Cincinnati after being traded by Cleveland in 2019.
The teams close their three-game series with an afternoon game Wednesday. Cincinnati right-hander Sonny Gray (0-1, 7.88 ERA) is looking to bounce back after allowing five earned runs over 3 2/3 innings in Friday's loss at St. Louis. Los Angeles lefty Clayton Kershaw (3-2, 2.56) faces the Reds for only the second time since 2016.