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Victorino's HR spurs Phillies to win in Cincy

Aug 30, 2011 - 3:16 AM Cincinnati, OH (Sports Network) - Shane Victorino seems to enjoy playing at Great American Ball Park.

The Phillies center fielder launched a tiebreaking, two-run homer in the eighth inning as Philadelphia edged Cincinnati, 3-2, in the opener of a four- game series.

Victorino pushed his hitting streak at the Reds' venue to eight games.

Wilson Valdez added an RBI double for the Phillies, who played for the first time since Friday in the wake of Hurricane Irene. The NL East leaders avoided a third straight loss and increased their advantage in the division over idle Atlanta to 6 1/2 games.

It had been a longer stretch between outings for Philadelphia's Cole Hamels. Activated from the disabled list before the game, Hamels limited Cincinnati to one run on two hits with no walks and seven strikeouts over six innings in his first start since August 12 because of left shoulder inflammation.

"I think I did pretty well and I look forward to the next start," Hamels said.

Victorino's blast made a winner out of Antonio Bastardo (6-0), who struck out the side in the seventh after issuing a leadoff walk.

Homer Bailey (7-6) gave up three runs on six hits in eight frames for Cincinnati, which was seeking a season best-tying fifth straight win. Bailey recorded a season-high nine strikeouts and did not walk a batter.

Valdez led off the Phillies' eighth with a single. After pinch-hitter Michael Martinez failed in his attempt to bunt the runner into scoring position, Victorino crushed a hanging curveball from Bailey to the right-field seats.

Singles by Ryan Hanigan, Brandon Phillips and Dave Sappelt trimmed Cincinnati's deficit to 3-2 in the bottom of the eighth. Michael Stutes escaped further trouble when Joey Votto grounded out to second to end the inning.

The Reds had the tying run on second in the ninth, but Ryan Madson closed the door to earn his 24th save of the season.

"We had action in the ninth, could have tied the game up or gone ahead. They made some good pitches," said Reds manager Dusty Baker.

Cincinnati opened the scoring in the fourth, when a misjudged fly ball resulted in a leadoff triple for Phillips. Phillies right fielder Hunter Pence overran the ball, slipped and fell down at the warning track. A groundout by Votto scored Phillips.

Philadelphia tied the game during its next at-bat. John Mayberry Jr. reached on a fielder's choice, took third on a single by Carlos Ruiz and scored on Valdez's double to left field. Bailey struck out Hamels and Victorino to end the fifth.

Game Notes

The Phillies have won 13 of their last 16 road games...Ruiz has hit safely in 10 straight games versus Cincinnati...The Phillies haven't dropped three in a row since a four-game skid from May 31-June 4.