CINCINNATI -- In a seesaw battle Saturday, the Reds held off the first-place Rockies for a 12-8 win at Great American Ball Park.
Cincinnati jumped to an early lead before the Rockies scored six times in the fifth and took an 8-3 lead. Not to be deterred, the Reds responded by scoring nine unanswered runs over the next three innings to snap their season-high seven-game losing streak.
Trailing by a run entering the fifth, the Rockies quickly tied things up after an RBI groundout by DJ LeMahieu, and took the lead on an Ian Desmond two-out single four batters later, chasing Reds starter Tim Adleman from the game after just 4 2/3 innings. Reds starters have pitched 22 2/3 innings over their last six games.
Colorado tacked on four more runs in the frame, taking a commanding 8-3 lead into the bottom of the fifth. But unlike the night before, Cincinnati was able to respond after a big inning by the Rockies.
They got one run back on a solo homer from Eugenio Suarez in the bottom of the fifth. That was it for Colorado rookie right-hander Antonio Senzatela, who went five innings and allowed four runs on five hits.
"He didn't quite locate his pitches like we've seen him," Rockies manager Bud Black said. "Velocity was fine, but just a little out of whack on the command. But hung in their with their guy. Outlasted their guy. We got the six-spot for him. After he gave up the home run, he turned it up a notch and got the last two outs.
"He was not at the top of his game, but nevertheless, a learning experience for him."
The Reds put together a six-run inning of their own in the sixth against Colorado relievers Chad Qualls and Mike Dunn. Upon scratching across three runs to cut the deficit to 8-7, Scott Schebler provided the exclamation point with a three-run homer to right field for a 10-8 lead.
"It's a big moment," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "There are so many moments that are in that game that the optimal thing doesn't happen. When it does, it's a sensational feeling. Talk about re-invigorating a ballclub. That inning and that three-run homer in and of itself brought our group back to life, especially after being down by so much."
"Today was a rare occurrence," Black said. "This hasn't happened. It's one of these days where they strung together hits. They found some holes. "It's baseball. A baseball game was played. They hit some homers in the sixth inning themselves and crawled back into the game with their bats."
The Reds tacked on two more runs in the seventh, and left the ball in the hands of reliever Asher Wojciechowski to close out the game and spell a tired bullpen. Less than 24 hours after getting called up from Triple-A Louisville for his team debut, the right-hander tossed 3 2/3 innings of one-hit ball to help stave off a Colorado comeback and earn his first Major League win.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Welcome back:Devin Mesoraco led off the bottom of the sixth inning by crushing a 1-1 pitch into the stands in left field to make it an 8-5 game, jump-starting the Reds' rally. The solo shot gave Mesoraco his second RBI of the day in his first time back in the lineup after missing four games with a sore left hamstring.
"In that situation, I'm just trying to get on base," Mesoraco said. "We're down a couple of runs. Your first goal is to get on base. It was a sinker kind of over the plate. I put a good swing on it. It worked out."
Helping his own cause: Two batters after Alexi Amarista's double, Colorado starter Antonio Senzatela stepped to the plate and slapped the first pitch he saw from Cincinnati reliever Drew Storen up the middle for a two-run single. The hit extended Colorado's lead to 7-3.
"It was kind of a crazy back-and-forth game. It's just fun to be a part of." -- Schebler, on the 12-8 victory.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
In the top of the fifth inning, the Rockies' Nolan Arenado attempted to go from first to third on a one-out single to center by Mark Reynolds. Arenado slid in before Billy Hamilton's throw reached Suarez at third and the third-base umpire called him safe, but it looked like Arenado may have slid over the bag and been tagged out on the foot by Suarez. After a replay review, the call was overturned and Arenado was ruled out.
WHAT'S NEXT Rockies: Left-hander Kyle Freeland (4-2, 3.13 ERA) gets the ball for the final game of the three-game series at 11:10 a.m. MT Sunday. Freeland is suited for Great American Ball Park: His ground-ball rate in 66.2 percent, third in MLB.
Reds: Righty Bronson Arroyo (3-3, 6.31 ERA) will take the mound for Cincinnati in the final game of the series at 1:10 p.m. ET. In his last start, Arroyo gave up five runs across five innings as the Reds fell to the Cubs, 9-5.