(Sports Network) - Staff ace Mat Latos aims for a third win in four decisions
on Friday night when the playoff-pursuing Cincinnati Reds visit the Milwaukee
Brewers for the first of three weekend games at Miller Park.
The Reds enter the series in a comfortable, but improvable postseason
position. They're now in possession of the National League's second Wild Card
spot and lead that pursuit by 5 1/2 games over the Washington Nationals.
However, they're just 2 1/2 games behind both Pittsburgh and St. Louis in the
NL Central Division, which means they could still earn the division crown for
the third time in four seasons.
Latos, in his second full season with the Reds after a trade that sent Edinson
Volquez, among others, to San Diego, was a 7-2 winner over the Cardinals on
Sept. 2 after going the nine-inning distance and giving up two runs on four
He dropped a 6-1 verdict to St. Louis one start before and defeated Arizona,
2-1, one start prior to that one. In his most recent outing, he got a no-
decision in the Reds' 4-3 defeat of the Los Angeles Dodgers after allowing
three runs in seven innings.
The Virginia native is 2-3 in seven career starts against the Brewers and
dropped a 2-0 verdict to them on Aug. 17 at Miller Park after going seven
innings and allowing two runs on six hits.
He's 5-4 in 16 road starts in 2013.
For Milwaukee, veteran righty Kyle Lohse faces the Reds for the 15th time in
The California native is 4-4 in the initial 14 outings, including a 2-1 loss
on Aug. 15 at Miller Park in which he allowed a single earned run on five hits
in seven innings.
Lohse pitched for the Reds in 2006 and 2007 and was 9-17 for them in 33
He's 1-1 in four starts since last facing Cincinnati, including an 8-5 loss to
the Chicago Cubs in his most recent outing on Sept. 6.
On Thursday in St. Louis, Sean Halton smacked a two-run homer and drove in
three in the Brewers' 5-3 win over the Cardinals in the finale of a three-game
Tyler Thornburg (2-1) fanned six and surrendered two runs on three hits and
two walks over six innings for Milwaukee, which dropped the first two in the
Jim Henderson gave up a run in the ninth, but still got credited with his 25th
save of the year in the triumph.
On Wednesday in Cincinnati, Jack Hannahan clubbed a pinch-hit three-run homer
and five pitchers combined to shut out the Cubs, as the Reds got a 6-0 win.
Devin Mesoraco went 3-for-4 with a solo home run for the Reds, who dodged
being swept at home by the Cubs for the first time in 12 years.
Reds starter Mike Leake picked up his career-high 13th win of the season after
limiting the Cubs to four hits in 5 2/3 innings. Leake (13-6) struck out six
and overcame bouts of wildness as indicated by four walks.
"Our pitching all-around has been doing a very good job," Leake said. "You
never feel like we're gonna blow it. It's nice to have that confidence behind
The Reds won nine of the first 16 games with the Brewers this season, a year
after winning the 2012 season series, 9-6.
The Sports Network