Rangers get home run from pitcher Yu Darvish, defeat Reds

The way pitchers hit against the Cincinnati Reds, they might want American League teams to just go ahead and use their designated hitters when they play at Great American Ball Park.

It’s probably less threatening.

One day after Texas left-hander Derek Holland notched his first career hit, Rangers right-hander Yu Darvish clubbed his first career home run, the first of back-to-back shots in the fifth inning and the third overall off Tim Adleman on their way to a 6-5 interleague win Wednesday.

Veteran third baseman Adrian Beltre snapped a 5-5 tie with a two-out, run-scoring double up the right-center field gap in the eighth inning off Blake Wood (5-2). The hit drove in Ian Desmond, who reached after being hit by a pitch with one out and stole second base.

The loss left the Reds with a 6-4 record on their 10-game home stand and 8-2-2 in the 12 series they’ve played since the All-Star break. They remain tied with the Seattle Mariners behind the Chicago Cubs for the second-best record in the majors since the All-Star break.

Cincinnati slipped to 5-12 in interleague play with three games left against the Angels at Anaheim next week.

Darvish and three Texas relief pitchers combined to limit the Reds to four hits, three of them singles. Cincinnati batters were able to coax five walks, and Adam Duvall was hit by a pitch. Three of those free passes ended up scoring.

“The only times he seemed to be vulnerable were when we had runners on base and he was trying to be quicker to the plate,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “I think it took discipline for our guys. How many hits did we have? Four? And we scored five runs. It was apparent that he wasn’t as sharp tonight as statistics indicated he’d been earlier.”

Darvish and Desmond turned in the fourth set of back-to-back homers given up by Reds pitchers in a span of three days. The Los Angeles Dodgers had three sets in Monday’s 18-9 shellacking. Darvish, whose shot to center field was a no-doubter, is the fifth pitcher to homer against the Reds this season and the fourth at Great American Ball Park.

“It was just a really bad pitch – something he could handle,” Adleman said of Darvish’s home run. “Those were big blows – two-out home runs when one pitch could’ve gotten me out of it. It’s definitely disappointing. There were some positives, but at the end of the day, I gave up a couple of runs I probably should have kept off the board.”

“Any time a guy is at the plate with a bat, there’s a chance something can happen,” Price said. “He hit a fastball out over the plate and he hit it well. It’s hard to know about American League pitchers, but he showed that he’s capable of hitting it out of the ballpark

Adleman, who threw five scoreless innings on Friday in his first start since May 19, needed 10 pitches to get through the first, but he needed 20 to negotiate the second while giving up three hits, including left fielder Nomar Mazara’s 15th homer of the season, a three-run shot into the right field seats.

The Reds cobbled together a “rally” of sorts in the bottom of the second, which started with Duvall being hit by a pitch. Scott Schebler and Eugenio Suarez loaded the bases with back-to-back one-out walks, setting up Ramon Cabrera’s run-scoring fielder’s-choice grounder and a run-scoring wild pitch.

They didn’t collect their first hit until Tony Renda’s single to left-center field while pinch-hitting for Adleman with one out in the fifth inning. Renda went to third when Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus threw wildly on Billy Hamilton’s chopper – probably not the wisest choice, considering who was running – and scored on a groundout.

Cincinnati tied the game in the sixth on Cabrera’s run-scoring ground-rule double and Ivan De Jesus Jr.’s sacrifice fly.

Adleman, who missed three months with a strained left oblique, allowed five hits and five runs, four earned, with one strikeout and no walks.

Former Reds center fielder Drew Stubbs made a cameo appearance, playing the ninth inning in left field for the Rangers.

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