CINCINNATI — Jay Bruce scored from third base in the 11th inning when Mike Fontenot's throw home was high, giving the Cincinnati Reds a 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs on Saturday.
Sean Marshall (3-5) walked Bruce to lead off the 11th. Bruce went to second on a wild pitch and advanced to third on Alex Gonzalez's sacrifice. After an intentional walk to Ryan Hanigan, pinch-hitter Adam Rosales hit a chopper to Fontenot, the third baseman. His throw to catcher Geovany Soto was high, allowing Bruce to score the winning run.
Fontenot's throwing error in the first led to three unearned runs off Ryan Dempster.
Nick Masset (3-0) walked a batter in two innings for the win.
Matt Maloney, making his major-league debut, pitched six solid innings for Cincinnati and singled in his first plate appearance. He started the seventh inning but was lifted when Soto led off with a towering home run off the left-field pole to cut Cincinnati's lead to 3-2.
Maloney allowed six hits and two runs with one walk and four strikeouts. He also hit a batter, but was in line for the win until the eighth when the Cubs got back-to-back, one-out singles from Ryan Theriot and Derrek Lee and a tying sacrifice fly by Jake Fox against reliever David Weathers.
Chicago's comeback let Dempster off the hook for a loss he wouldn't have deserved. Dempster didn't allow an earned run, giving up six hits with seven strikeouts and two walks.
The Reds' defense helped Maloney shake off early jitters. Center fielder Chris Dickerson, who made two diving catches in the late innings of Friday's game, followed with another on Lee's sinking liner to short left-center field with two on and no out in the first inning.
Dickerson threw out Reed Johnson trying to advance from second to third on Soto's fly ball to center in the fourth inning. Dickerson celebrated that out with a fist pump, and it loomed larger when Bobby Scales followed with his third home run of the season.
The Reds took an early 3-0 lead to help Maloney. Fontenot committed his throwing error on Cincinnati's first batter of the game, and the Reds capitalized with the three unearned runs. Jerry Hairston reached on the error and scored all the way from first on Dickerson's double to left-center field, sliding wide headfirst and brushing his hand across the plate to just beat the relay.
Two outs later, Ramon Hernandez hit an 0-1 pitch to the opposite field and off the roof of the visitors' bullpen down the right-field line for his fourth home run of the season.
Castillo back to Louisville
To make room for left-hander Matt Maloney, the Reds optioned catcher Wilkin Castillo to Triple-A Louisville on Saturday. The move meant the Reds would have 13 pitchers on the roster. Castillo was in his second stint with the Reds. He made three appearances, two as a pinch-hitter and one as a pinch-runner. He was 1-for-2.