By HAL McCOY
For five innings Sunday afternoon in Busch Stadium, it looked as if it was same ol’ and same ol’ and some ol’ for the Cincinnati Reds against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Put ‘em on base and leave ‘em there.
They left two runners on base in the first, two runners on base in the second and two runners on third against former teammate Mike Leake.
And they trailed, 4-0, after Matt Carpenter’s three-run double in the fifth inning.
FOR ONCE, THOUGH, it was the other team’s bullpen suffering a meltdown and the Reds came from behind to score a 5-4 victory.
With the win, the Reds avoided a road sweep. They were 1-and-4 on trip after losing three straight in Milwaukee and the first game in St. Louis. They were rained out Saturday.
LEAKE, WHO ENTERED THE game 3-and-1 with a 1.32 earned run average, gave up a run in the sixth on a double by Adam Duvall and a single by Scott Schebler.
Duvall, 2 for 17 during the first four games of the trip, finished the day with four hits, including three doubles.
Leake left the game after six innings, believing he finally owned a win over the Reds. He is 0-and-3 in five starts against the Reds while pitching for the Cardinals. The Cardinals have now lost all six games Leake has started against the Reds.
REDS STARTER BRONSON ARROYO was solid for four innings, holding the Cardinals to one run. But things got away from him in the sixth.
Leake started it with a single and Dexter Fowler singled. Aledmys Diaz walked to fill the bases and Carpenter unloaded them with a three-run double over right fielder Schebler’s head.
With Leake out of the game in the seventh, the Reds went to work against Matt Bowman and they did most of their damage with two outs.
Billy Hamilton led with a single before Zack Cozart struck out, one of three times he struck out Sunday. Joey Votto grounded out, putting a runner on second with two outs.
Duvall doubled to right to cut the margin to 4-2. Eugenio Suarez singled to right to make it 4-3 and Suarez went all the way to third on a Cardinals throwing error.
BRENT CECIL REPLACED BOWMAN and Schebler doubled to right to tie it, 4-4.
Trevor Rosenthal began the eighth for the Cardinals by walked Tucker Barnhart on four pitches. Pinch-hitter Devin Mesoraco singled and Rosenthal walked Billy Hamilton on four pitches.
That loaded the bases with no outs but the Reds scored only one run — just enough.
Cozart struck out. That brought up Votto, 0 for 5 with three strikeouts against Rosenthal. But Votto lined a 2-and-2 pitch into center field for a run and a 5-4 lead.
With the bases still full and a chance for the Reds to break it open Duvall struck out and Suarez popped out.
MANAGER BRYAN PRICE BROUGHT in Raisel Iglesias for a two-inning save and he wobbled but survived.
He walked Stephen Piscotty to open the eighth. Yadier Molina struck out and Piscotty was caught in a rundown. Iglesias then struck out Randal Grichuk.
The Cardinals put their first runner on base in the ninth, too, and he reached third base. Kolten Wong singled, took second on pinch-hitter Greg Garcia’s grounder, took third on Dexter Fowler’s grounder but stood on third as the game ended on Aledmys Diaz’s first-pitch ground ball to third.
In addition to the two scoreless innings for Iglesias, the Reds received scoreless innings from Michael Lorenzen and Wandy Peralta, who got the win.
And in addition to Duvall’s four hits, Schebler had three hits and drove in two, Votto had two hits and Tucker Barnhart had two hits.
The Reds have won three of their last 12, all three victories started by Arroyo. The other starters are 0-and-9.