Final

Series: Game 3 of 3

Cincinnati won 2-1

Game 1: Friday, May 28
Cincinnati7Final
Montreal6
Game 2: Saturday, May 29
Cincinnati4Final
Montreal1
Game 3: Sunday, May 30
Cincinnati2Final
Montreal6

Reds 2

(29-21, 13-12 away)

Expos 6

(16-33, 9-17 home)

1:05 PM ET, May 30, 2004

Olympic Stadium, Montreal, Quebec 

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CIN 100000100 2 10 1
MON 21011001 - 6 7 1

W: T. Ohka (3-5)

L: J. Valentine (0-1)

S: C. Cordero (1)

Pitcher bats eighth, shuts down Reds

MONTREAL (AP) -- Moved up in the batting order, Tomo Ohka beat the Cincinnati Reds with his arm, not his bat.

Ohka became the first major league pitcher in more than five years to bat higher than ninth in the starting lineup and went hitless in two at-bats, but he worked 6 2-3 strong innings to lead the Montreal Expos over the Reds 6-2.

With his team having lost eight of nine, Expos manager Frank Robinson batted Ohka eighth in the lineup "to try something different." He moved Jamey Carroll hitting .256 coming in, to the ninth spot. Ohka was batting .118.

"I just thought we'll try it out because nothing else is working here right now," Robinson said. "Let's see if something different can get us going. It's not something that I'm going to use every day, but it did work for us today and we'll take it."

It was the first time a pitcher batted higher than ninth in the starting lineup in the majors since St. Louis' Matt Morris hit eighth against Montreal on Sept. 27, 1998, and Eli Marrero moved down to the No. 9 spot.

The move immediately backfired when Ohka fouled out to first with the bases loaded, ending the first inning and helping Reds rookie Joe Valentine escape a jam trailing only 2-1.

"It's unbelievable," said catcher Brian Schneider, who was walked intentionally ahead of Ohka. "It's just funny how things work out, and all of a sudden the first time the situation comes up the seven-hole comes up with second and third and the pitcher is in the eight-hole. We kind of laughed about it."

Ohka also hit a groundout that ended the fourth with runners on first and second.

"I didn't mind at all," Ohka said. "I tried to get a base hit."

Ohka finished 0-for-2 with a walk. Carroll went 1-for-3 with walk.

"I got to lead off a few innings, and it worked out well," Carroll said.

Brad Wilkerson and Endy Chavez homered for Montreal, an NL worst 16-33. Nick Johnson drew three of the Expos' season-high 10 walks.

Ohka (3-5) allowed six hits and two runs -- one earned -- to improve to 3-0 in his last five starts after beginning the season 0-5.

Despite building a 4-1 lead, Montreal left 10 runners on base through the first four innings.

Chad Cordero got six outs for his first save.

Wilkerson hit his sixth homer off Mike Matthews in the fifth to make it 5-1. Wily Mo Pena hit his first career pinch-hit homer off Ohka with one out in the seventh to draw the Reds to 5-2.

Chavez homered for the second straight game to restore Montreal's four-run lead.

Cincinnati's D'Angelo Jimenez went 4-for-4 to tie his career high for hits in a game. He has four four-hit games, including May 19 against Colorado.

Valentine (0-1), making his first career start in place of injured seven-game winner Paul Wilson, walked two of the first three batters he faced before Tony Batista's RBI double tied the game at 1.

Johnson walked to load the bases, and Terrmel Sledge hit an RBI grounder to first to make it 2-1.

Schneider was intentionally walked and Ohka fouled out to first baseman Sean Casey's on Valentine's first pitch.

Valentine, who was recalled from Triple-A Louisville, gave up a leadoff single to Carroll in the second and left after allowing his fifth walk to Wilkerson.

"He didn't seem nervous," Reds manager Dave Miley said. "I mean, I didn't talk to him, but the guy seemed fine. We were obviously expecting getting more out of Joe."

Valentine allowed two hits and three runs in one-plus innings. Norton walked four and allowed three hits and one run in three innings.

"I couldn't find my rhythm, and I couldn't find the strike zone," Valentine said. "I'm just disappointed not helping out the team when I should have."

Game notes


Valentine made two relief appearances with the Reds last season. ... Steve Renko was the last Expos pitcher to bat higher than ninth in the starting lineup when he hit eighth against San Diego on Aug. 23, 1973. Renko went 2-for-3 in a 4-2 loss to the Padres at Jarry Park. ... Montreal drew a team-record 13 walks against Pittsburgh on Sept. 14, 1974.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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