MILWAUKEE -- Joey Votto delivered a two-run home run in a four-run top of the ninth inning that pushed the Reds ahead for an 12-9 win over the Brewers on a wild Saturday night at Miller Park.
Brewers closer Francisco Rodriguez was on the mound to lock down a 9-8 lead in the ninth when he blew his first save of the season after he was a perfect 30-for-30 in chances. Jay Bruce opened with a single to center field. Next came Votto, who lifted a 2-1 pitch the opposite way for a two-run homer to left field -- his 25th of the season. A walk and two hits would follow as the Reds added two insurance runs. Milwaukee entered the night 51-0 when leading after eight innings. J.J. Hoover pitched a scoreless bottom of the eighth for the win. Aroldis Chapman recorded his 25th save in the ninth.
Cincinnati scored two in the first inning against Garza and jumped out to a 6-1 lead on Bruce's three-run home run in a second inning when nine men batted. But struggling rookie starter Keyvius Sampson let the Brewers back in the game and his lead shrank to 7-6 when Milwaukee sent nine to the plate and scored three runs. Garza allowed seven runs and 11 hits in his 3 2/3 innings while Sampson was touched for six runs (five earned) and seven hits while throwing 97 pitches over his 3 2/3 innings.
"We haven't been hitting the last couple of days," Reds third baseman Todd Frazier said. "Pitching gave up a bunch of runs. It's time for us to pick it up. It goes hand-in-hand."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Career-high for Frazier: The Reds were clinging to a one-run lead when Frazier led off by hitting Tyler Thornburg's 1-0 pitch to left field to give his team an 8-6 lead. It was Frazier's 30th homer of the season, a new career high. His last long ball came on Aug. 15 at Los Angeles.
"It felt great," said Frazier, who has hit safely in nine of his last 11 games. "I was telling Jay and Joey 'Thanks for finally opening the door. I can come to the party now.' They were laughing. It's just get a pitch to hit. I've been feeling comfortable these past two weeks, three weeks and nothing really has ever changed. Getting 30 is a good feat for me. One of my goals was definitely to hit over 30 home runs."
Scooter's big night: By the time the sixth inning rolled around, Scooter Gennett had already had the second four-hit game of his career. After singling and scoring in the first inning, Gennett recorded RBI singles in the second and fourth to help spur Milwaukee's comeback. He then evened the score at 8-8 in the fifth inning with a triple to the right-field corner off of Burke Badenhop.
We did a great job coming back," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "There were a lot of positive things that happened tonight. We had a huge two-out rally that got us three runs and got us back in the game and another real good rally to take the lead." More >
Bruce goes very, very deep: With two on and two out in the second inning, Bruce attacked a Garza 2-0 pitch and crushed his three-run homer that hit the scoreboard in center field. According to Statcast™, the massive drive left Bruce's bat at 107 mph and was projected to travel 442 feet. It was the struggling Bruce's second homer this month, his first since Aug. 10, and he surpassed his total from all of 2014. More >
Rare slip up: Not only was Rodriguez perfect in save chances in 2015, but the veteran closer hadn't blown a save since Aug. 27, 2014 in San Diego. The stretch of 35 consecutive converted saves was the longest active streak in the big leagues.
"Frankie has been perfect this year," Counsell said. "He's been a rock, and he'll continue to be a rock for us. A great hitter got him tonight."
Rodriguez was not happy about the performance, but recognized that his streak couldn't last forever.
"Eventually, it was going to happen," Rodriguez said. "Unfortunately, it was a bad moment. The way we fell behind on the scoreboard, but we chipped away and eventually got the lead. It's frustrating. They way the guys battled so hard to get back in the game and I let it slip away. It's just frustrating."
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
When the Reds took a 2-0 lead in the first inning against Garza, it was the first time they led a game since Monday vs. the Tigers, when they last won a game. The last time they scored first in a game was Aug. 20 vs. Arizona.
"At this point in time with the struggles of August amongst other things, we're in here savoring a win, a resilient win at that." -- Price, after his club was shut out the previous two games and lost 13 of the last 14 before Saturday.
WHAT'S NEXT Reds: John Lamb is still seeking his first big league win and will be trying again at 2:10 p.m. ET in his fourth big league start as the Reds and Brewers wrap their three-game series. Lamb allowed three earned runs and five hits over five innings on Tuesday for a 5-1 loss to the Dodgers.
Brewers: Wily Peralta will look to bounce back from his shortest outing since May of 2013 when he faces the Reds in the series finale Sunday at 1:10 p.m. CT. He lasted just 2 2/3 innings against the Indians on Tuesday, grinding through a rough 71-pitch outing. In his lone start against Cincinnati this season, Peralta allowed six runs over seven innings on April 20.