Cincinnati Reds

Cincy makes Cook feel right at home

Rockies starter and Fort Campbell native Aaron Cook gave up six hits and no runs on a warm day at Great American Ballpark. Before Sunday, he was 0-5 with a 6.70 ERA on the road.
Rockies starter and Fort Campbell native Aaron Cook gave up six hits and no runs on a warm day at Great American Ballpark. Before Sunday, he was 0-5 with a 6.70 ERA on the road. AP

CINCINNATI — Aaron Cook ended his road futility at the place he still calls home. Cook went seven innings for a breakthrough win on the road Sunday, and Chris Iannetta's homer off left-hander Travis Wood gave the Colorado Rockies a 1-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, who are losing a lot of close games these days.

Cook (4-5), who was born in Fort Campbell, gave his best performance of the season in a ballpark that's only a half-hour drive from his hometown of Hamilton, Ohio. With family in the stands, he allowed six hits and one unintentional walk in seven innings.

"It was by far and away his best performance of the year," Rockies Manager Jim Tracy said. "It was vintage Aaron Cook."

The right-hander had been one of only four full-time NL starters without a road win this season, going 0-5 with a 6.70 ERA away from Coors Field. All that changed back in his old stomping grounds.

"This is where I grew up," Cook said. "It always feels like home when I come back. I feel comfortable pitching here. There's something about it."

Two of the NL's top offenses had trouble on a hot, breezy afternoon — the kind that usually means a lot of runs at Great American Ball Park. This one was decided by one swing. Iannetta connected in the sixth on a changeup that was over the plate but down.

"I threw a pretty good pitch," Wood said. "He just put a good swing on a good pitch, and it went out."

The Reds wasted a chance to tie it in the ninth against closer Huston Street, who pitched out of a two-on threat. The final number was numbingly familiar — Cincinnati has lost five 1-0 games this season. Each of its last three losses have been by the same score.

"These 1-0 games are killing us," Manager Dusty Baker said. "It seems like, lately, we score a lot of runs or none at all."

They had a chance in the ninth against Street, who gave up one-out singles by Drew Stubbs and Ryan Hanigan that put runners at first and third. Street used his slider to fan Chris Heisey and Brandon Phillips.

"The last eight pitches were sliders," said Street, who is 6-for-6 in save chances since returning from a sore shoulder.

Colorado has piled up big numbers at Coors Field but struggled on the road, batting only .231 — third-worst in the majors. That trend held: The Rockies scored four runs while dropping two of three during the series.

The struggles on Sunday had a lot to do with Wood, a 23-year-old rookie who was nearly perfect his last time out. The left-hander retired the first 24 Phillies on July 10 before Carlos Ruiz led off the ninth with a double — the only runner to reach against him. Philadelphia eventually won it 1-0 in 11 innings.

Iannetta had two of Colorado's three hits off Wood.

"Those were not comfortable at-bats," Iannetta said. "He has a lot of movement on all of his pitches."

Wood (0-1) struggled with his control but was adept at pitching out of trouble. He walked a pair in the second inning, when a double play bailed him out. The Rockies loaded the bases in the fourth, but Wood got Clint Barmes to pop out.

The Reds trumped the Rockies in futility, leaving runners in scoring position in each of the first four innings. That's been a trend — Cincinnati is 3-for-35 with runners in scoring position over the last five games. It was the team's 11th shutout this season.

Bailey works in bullpen

Homer Bailey threw a bullpen session on Sunday and, if he recovers properly, he'll throw a simulated game on Wednesday, Reds pitching coach Bryan Price said. Bailey has been on the 15-day disabled list since May 24 because of right-shoulder inflammation, but Price said there have been no setbacks in the recovery process.

"That's a big thing because when you have periodic setbacks, typically it's representative of something a little bit more significant being a problem," Price said.

If all goes well this week, Price said Bailey will probably make at least three or four rehab appearances before rejoining the Reds. Price said he is taking it slow with Aaron Harang, who hasn't started since May 30 because of lower-back spasms.

■ Scott Rolen missed his second straight game because of illness Sunday, and Jay Bruce received a day off. Rolen was in the clubhouse Sunday morning, but Miguel Cairo got the start at third base again, batting sixth. Bruce was out of the starting lineup to help him snap out of his current funk. He was hitless in his past 12 at-bats entering Sunday, and Reds manager Dusty Baker said he had a "work day off."

LeCure fans 13

Rookie Sam LeCure struck out 13 with no walks in seven innings for Triple-A Louisville in a 5-4 win over Lehigh Valley. LeCure, who went 1-4 with a 4.86 ERA in six starts during his first major-league stint with the Reds this season, gave up four hits and two runs for the Bats on Sunday. He is 6-2 in Louisville with a 2.55 ERA.

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