After Leake struggles, bullpen shuts door

Reds' Adcock, Parra and Chapman combine to pitch five scoreless innings

After Leake struggles, bullpen shuts door

CINCINNATI -- It looked like the Reds' bullpen was going to get a much-needed quiet night after it worked 10 innings over parts of two games Sunday in New York. The team pulled out to an eight-run lead as the lineup was roughing up the Twins on Monday night to the benefit of starter Mike Leake.

Things didn't go quite so smoothly for Leake, however. He was gone after four innings and it was the bullpen trio of Nate Adcock, Manny Parra and Aroldis Chapman that came up large in the Reds' 11-7 win over the Twins.

"We needed two [innings] from Adcock and two from Parra to get us to Chappy. Those guys really performed above and beyond expectations," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "I know both of them were tired."

The bullpen turned in five hitless and scoreless innings. It was Adcock who earned his first victory as a Red, and second big league win overall, with only two walks allowed over two innings. Interestingly, his other win in the big leagues also came against the Twins, on April 30, 2011, for the Royals.

Price on Leake, Hamilton in win

"It's kind of weird, but it's a good feeling. A good win for the ball club," Adcock said. "Definitely the way the bullpen has been going, I knew it would be multiple innings, for sure."

Before Adcock was needed, the Reds took a 9-1 lead for Leake with a five-run third where 10 men batted. It meant a long time being idle for Leake -- who was 3-0 with a 2.45 ERA in his previous five starts in June -- before he turned in a subpar inning.

Minnesota scored seven runs off Leake in the fourth, while also sending 10 to the plate. Brian Dozier's three-run homer made it a 9-7 game.

"I can get a little bored, but it's not an excuse," Leake said. "I elevated some balls and put some pretty good balls to hit over the plate and they took advantage of it."

The pressure was on Adcock to cool off Minnesota while hoping Cincinnati's lineup could score again.

"I don't think it's easy for the savviest of veterans," Price said. "The Twins took the momentum out from us to them."

On June 20 of last season vs. the Blue Jays, the Reds relinquished an 8-0 second-inning lead before losing, 14-9. It was a devastating loss.

"Nobody wants to go through that," Price said. "The shutdown pitching from the bullpen and the add-on runs were the difference-makers."

Parra turned in two perfect innings in the seventh and eighth. Chapman struck out the side in the ninth.

"I just go in there and try to do my job and keep the lead where it's at, try to get to those guys at the end of the bullpen -- Manny, [J.J.] Hoover, Chappy," Adcock said. "If you get to those guys, most likely you'll come out with a win."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.