Cozart's clutch double lifts Reds vs. Giants

Cozart's clutch double lifts Reds vs. Giants

SAN FRANCISCO -- Defensive replacement Scooter Gennett hit a leadoff triple in the eighth inning and scored on Zack Cozart's RBI double as the Reds bounced back after twice coming up short with runners in scoring position to beat the Giants, 3-2, on Thursday night.

"I feel like the team in general, we've been coming through in spots like that," Cozart said.

Billy Hamilton continued to pepper the Giants' pitching staff, singling twice and scoring a pair of runs while Joey Votto remained the Reds' hottest hitter with two RBIs to help Cincinnati win its fourth straight against San Francisco.

The Reds played from behind most of the night after starter Bronson Arroyo gave up solo home runs to Brandon Belt and Denard Span, but they tied it on Votto's RBI single in the sixth before Cozart's game-winner in the eighth off reliever Hunter Strickland.

Span's strong offensive day

"I feel like Bronson did what Bronson always does all the time, pitch really well, gave us a great chance to win," said Cozart. "Bullpen was lights out. And when you have the recipe, you don't have to score many runs, which was obvious tonight."

Wandy Peralta (2-0) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win and Raisel Iglesias worked the ninth for his seventh save.

Peralta escapes jam in the 8th

Five days after giving up 10 runs in three innings to the Reds, Giants starter Ty Blach limited Cincinnati to two runs on five hits while matching his season high of seven innings.

Blach strikes out Mesoraco

"That's what makes this game a little bit tougher, because we got such a great effort from Blach," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "Great job of bouncing back against the same club that beat him up pretty good. It's a shame we didn't get him a win with that job he did."

Span returns from DL with four-hit night

Tightening the Belt: San Francisco's power-starved lineup got a big boost from the return of Span, but it was the solo blast from Belt in the first inning that was most significant. The Giants' first baseman had been in an 0-for-18 funk before crushing Arroyo's fourth pitch of the game over the wall in center field. It was Belt's fifth home run of the season but first since April 21.

Belt's solo homer

"It's always nice to do that," Belt said. "The main thing is to try and stay confident. Confidence is huge in this game. Just make little adjustments here and there. You're going to have some valleys, you've got to keep on pushing and hopefully get back on track."

Finishing strong: Arroyo had an eventful six-inning outing. The right-hander had a pair of balls hit back at him, pitched with runners on base in every inning and gave up two solo home runs. Arroyo saved his best work for his last inning, when he retired the Giants' Nos. 4-5-6 hitters -- Brandon Crawford, Christian Arroyo and Joe Panik --on seven pitches.

Arroyo fans Belt

"That has been an issue. Balls shouldn't get hit that hard. We're not executing the 0-2 pitches. We're giving up not just base hits, but balls that are hit really well." -- Bochy, after watching both of the Reds' hits in the decisive eighth inning come on 0-2 pitches

Reds: Cincinnati will send righty Scott Feldman (2-3, 3.76 ERA) to the hill Friday after throwing a complete-game shutout against Giants last week, allowing four hits and striking out five at Great American Ball Park. He'll be looking to log consecutive wins and quality starts for the first time this season. First pitch is slated for 10:15 p.m. ET.

Giants: Right-hander Johnny Cueto (4-2) takes another shot at his former club at 7:15 p.m. PT after coming up empty in each of his previous two tries, including his most recent start. Cueto fanned a season-high 10 Reds this past Sunday, but he took the loss after allowing his first two unearned runs this season.

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Michael Wagaman is a contributor to and covered the Giants on Thursday.

Christopher Biderman is a contributor to and covered the Reds on Thursday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.