CLEVELAND (AP) -- Ken Griffey Jr. is back on track and so are the
Griffey hit two homers and Felipe Lopez doubled home the
go-ahead run with two outs in the ninth inning as the Reds remained
unbeaten under interim manager Jerry Narron with a 5-4 victory over
the Cleveland Indians on Friday night.
"Any time you win it is fun, but Jerry's a good guy and let's
keep it going," said Griffey, who went 3-for-4 and has 23 RBI in
26 games with a .347 (35-for-101) average.
The Reds are 3-0 since Narron replaced Dave Miley, who was
fired. Cincinnati snapped an eight-game road losing streak and is
7-6 in interleague play.
Jose Hernandez hit two homers for Cleveland, which lost its
fourth straight and fell to 13-3 in interleague play after winning
nine straight against NL teams.
"Offensively, we sure have to do a better job of taking
advantage of opportunities," said Cleveland manager Eric Wedge,
who would not compare the Indians' play of late to a streaky August
2004. Ten months ago, Cleveland won 10 of 11 to move within one
game of first place -- then dropped nine straight to fall out of
Wily Mo Pena singled to open the ninth against Bob Howry (4-2)
and was sacrificed to second. After Edwin Encarnacion struck out,
Lopez hit a 1-1 pitch the opposite way off the left-field wall to
"I just tried to get my pitch to hit," said Lopez, who went
2-for-4 and leads all NL shortstops with 44 RBI. "I thought they
might pitch around me with nobody on first, but he threw a fastball
outside and I went with it."
Griffey tied the score 4-4 with a one-out shot into the
right-field stands in the eighth for his 14th homer this season and
515th of his career. It was his first multihomer game this year and
51st of his career.
"I'm not surprised at what he's doing," Narron said. "His
slow start was a matter of him getting his legs. He hits with his
legs and he wasn't able to do that earlier."
Griffey delivered on a 3-2 pitch from Scott Sauerbeck to snap an
0-for-12 career streak with four strikeouts against the
"You face a guy enough and you're going to get one," Griffey
said. "He's a tough lefty who throws from a lot of different
Sauerbeck said he had no idea he had been that successful
"He just beat me," Sauerbeck said. "I don't even think it was
a strike, but he's a Hall of Famer and he got it."
Griffey and Joe Randa hit consecutive homers to open the Reds'
second off Scott Elarton. Griffey sent a drive the opposite way
into the left-field bleachers on the first pitch. Randa followed
with his 12th homer for a 2-1 lead.
Hernandez put the Indians ahead 3-2 with his second homer
leading off the bottom half against Eric Milton. He opened the
fourth with another homer for a 4-3 lead. It was his eighth career
multihomer game and first since May 7, 2004, at Pittsburgh when he
was with Los Angeles.
Cleveland took a 2-0 lead in the first. Victor Martinez had an
RBI single and Ronnie Belliard followed with a run-scoring double.
Martinez tried to score from first and was out by 20 feet to end
A sacrifice fly by Sean Casey in the Reds' third tied the score
Elarton allowed three runs over six innings, striking out a
Milton, 0-4 in six starts since May 28, allowed four runs over
six innings -- the 11th time in 16 starts he has given up four or
more this season. He has given up 27 homers, the most in majors.
Cleveland leads the all-time interleague series between the
Ohio teams 21-16. ... 3B Aaron Boone returned to the Cleveland
lineup after missing two games with strep throat. He said he lost 8
to 10 pounds because he had trouble swallowing and did not eat for
a few days. ... Griffey is 16th on the all-time homer list, six
behind Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Willie McCovey. ...
Hernandez had gone 88 at-bats since his last homer, April 16. ...
Cincinnati is 7-24 on the road.