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Cubs top Reds to halt six-game skid

Apr 21, 2012 - 9:37 PM Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - The drought is over for Paul Maholm.

The left-hander tossed six strong innings and the Chicago Cubs used an early offensive surge to beat the Cincinnati Reds, 6-1, in the middle test of a three-game series at Wrigley Field.

Maholm (1-2) gave up one run on four hits and three walks to pick up his first win since July 10, 2011. He had gone 0-7 with a 7.03 earned run average in his previous nine outings.

"I need ground balls and I need to get ahead and execute pitches," Maholm said.

Darwin Barney and Steve Clevenger both had three hits and knocked in a run for the Cubs, who snapped a six-game losing streak.

Mike Leake (0-2) allowed five runs on 10 hits in 5 2/3 innings for Cincinnati, which was vying for its third straight win. The Reds have dropped six of nine overall.

The teams traded runs in the first inning. After Brandon Phillips' one-out single plated Zack Cozart, Chicago tied it on a Bryan LaHair sacrifice fly.

The Cubs moved ahead with a four-run second, during which they set eight men to the plate. Clevenger led off with a single and scored when Joe Mather doubled into the left-center field gap.

After Maholm went down on strikes for the second out, David DeJesus, Barney and Starlin Castro strung together three consecutive hits.

DeJesus singled home Mather, who had advanced to third on failed pickoff attempt, and then crossed the plate when Barney doubled into the left-field corner. Castro contributed an RBI triple for a 5-1 Chicago lead.

The Reds loaded the bases in the fourth, but Maholm escaped the jam by retiring Leake on a fielder's choice.

"We had some chances to come back. We could have pecked away and got a little closer," said Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker.

Clevenger added a run-scoring single in the seventh.

Game Notes

Chicago was in the midst of its longest slide since an eight-game skid from May 30-June 7, 2011...Maholm improved to 6-1 in nine career starts against the Reds away from Great American Ball Park...Chicago outhit the Reds, 14-6...Castro extended his hit streak to nine games...The five runs were the most allowed by Leake in eight career starts against the Cubs...Before the game, the Cubs placed starting pitcher Ryan Dempster on the 15-day disabled list (retroactive to April 18) with a strained right quad and recalled outfielder Tony Campana from Triple-A Iowa.

    CHICAGO: 6

    Apr 21 3:45 PM

  • Steve Clevenger singled to right scoring Darwin Barney with two out. On the play, Clevenger thrown out at second to end the inning.

    Reds 1, Cubs 6  End 7Apr 21 3:19 PM
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    Reds 1, Cubs 5  Mid 7Apr 21 3:09 PM
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    Reds 1, Cubs 5  Top 7, 1 OutApr 21 3:01 PM

  • Bryan LaHair flied out to left to end the inning.

    Reds 1, Cubs 5  End 2Apr 21 1:50 PM

  • Darwin Barney doubled to left scoring David DeJesus with two out. Runner on second and Starlin Castro due up.

    Reds 1, Cubs 4  Bot 2, 2 OutsApr 21 1:47 PM

  • David DeJesus singled to center scoring Joe Mather with two out. Runner on first and Darwin Barney due up.

    Reds 1, Cubs 3  Bot 2, 2 OutsApr 21 1:46 PM

  • Joe Mather doubled to left scoring Steve Clevenger with one out. Runner on second and Paul Maholm due up.

    Reds 1, Cubs 2  Bot 2, 1 OutApr 21 1:43 PM
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    Reds 1, Cubs 2  Bot 2, 1 OutApr 21 1:43 PM

  • Bryan LaHair sacrifice fly to center scored David DeJesus with two out. Runner on first and Ian Stewart due up.

    Reds 1, Cubs 1  Bot 1, 2 OutsApr 21 1:26 PM

  • Brandon Phillips singled to left scoring Zack Cozart with one out. On the play, Joey Votto advances to second. Runners on first and second with Ryan Ludwick due up.

    Reds 1, Cubs 0  Top 1, 1 OutApr 21 1:13 PM

    CHICAGO: 0
    Top 1, 0 Outs

    Apr 21 1:07 PM
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    Reds vs. CubsDec 20 6:02 AM