PHOENIX -- Jay Bruce hit a towering three-run home run in the fourth inning, and the Reds added five more runs in the sixth against the Brewers when the National League Central rivals met for the final time this spring on Tuesday at Maryvale Baseball Park in a 10-4 Reds win.
An error charged to Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez aided the Reds' big sixth against Milwaukee left-hander Neal Cotts, who lasted one-third of an inning and was charged with five earned runs. In seven innings this spring, Cotts has surrendered 11 earned runs, 18 hits and six walks.
The Reds earned a measure of revenge after losing their first two games against the Brewers this spring. The teams will see each other again soon; they meet April 20-23 at Miller Park and April 27-29 at Great American Ball Park.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
•Chapman exits early: Reds closer Aroldis Chapman faced just one batter before being removed. Though the Reds initially thought it was a hamstring situation, it turned out to be a miscommunication and the lefty is fine.
Big Bruce: Brewers starter Mike Fiers was cruising along before running into Brewer-killer Bruce in the fourth inning. Todd Frazier had walked and Marlon Byrd reached on a one-out single before Bruce hit his homer to left-center field for a 3-1 Reds lead. He made it 4-1 two innings later with a single that bounced past Gomez in center field for a run-scoring error.
Back on Fiers: Sidelined earlier this month by a bout of shoulder weakness, Fiers pitched past the fourth inning in an "A" game for the first time this spring. He was charged with three runs on three hits and four walks, with three strikeouts in five innings. Fiers could remain in Phoenix when the Brewers head north to make one final Spring Training tuneup in Minor League camp, though that plan has yet to be formalized.
Fizzled first: Milwaukee had a big first inning brewing against Reds starter Michael Lorenzen, taking a 1-0 lead when Gomez walked and Jonathan Lucroy and Ryan Braun followed with sharp singles. That's where the rally ended. Aramis Ramirez scalded a line drive, but it went right to second baseman Kristopher Negron, who doubled off Lucroy. When Adam Lind grounded out weakly, a promising inning was over.
"I think we have bad luck that every time he [Bruce] faces us, he looks good. He's a true hitter. He's one of the best." -- Gomez, on Bruce's success vs. the Brewers
"For me, it's good that I'm getting another start to work on my stuff again. I don't think I'm 100 percent ready right now." -- Fiers, on how he feels as the regular season nears
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
• Bruce is a familiar foe for Milwaukee. He has hit more regular season home runs (25) and logged more RBIs (63) against the Brewers than any other opponent.
Reds: Right-hander Johnny Cueto makes his first Cactus League start since March 15 against the D-backs at 4:05 p.m. ET on Wednesday at Goodyear Ballpark on Gameday Audio. Cueto has been building his arm strength in Minor League games the past few starts. The Reds hope Cueto throws about 85-90 pitches in his final spring tuneup before Opening Day against the Pirates.
Brewers: A day after a slew of camp cuts all but set the Brewers' Opening Day roster, Opening Day starter Kyle Lohse will make his final spring tuneup in Mesa, Ariz., against the Cubs on Wednesday at 3:05 p.m. CT. Lohse is headed for his third career start in a season opener, and his first with the Brewers. The game will be broadcast on MLB.TV.
Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.