Reds threaten in ninth, but fall to Blue Jays

CINCINNATI — Davis Schneider hit a tiebreaking solo homer and Jordan Romano worked out of a jam in the ninth inning, sending the Toronto Blue Jays to a 4-3 victory over Elly De La Cruz and the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday night.

Chris Bassitt pitched six efficient innings as Toronto (68-56) rebounded from a stretch of five losses in seven games. All-Star Bo Bichette hit an RBI single in his first big league game since July 31.

De La Cruz had two hits for Cincinnati (64-60), including a wild run around the bases in the fourth. TJ Friedl homered, and Christian Encarnacion-Strand had two of the team’s six hits.

Schneider went deep against Brandon Williamson (4-3) with one out in the fifth, giving Toronto a 4-3 lead. It was Schneider’s third homer of the season.

Cincinnati put runners on second and third with one out in the ninth against Romano. But the All-Star closer struck out Henry Ramos and retired Stuart Fairchild on a grounder to third, earning his 30th save.

Bassitt (12-6) was charged with three runs, two earned, and three hits. He struck out six and walked one.

Toronto scored three times with two out in the fourth for a 3-0 lead. Daulton Varsho, Whit Merrifield and Bichette each hit an RBI single.

Bichette went 1 for 5 in his return to the lineup after he was sidelined by a right knee injury. Veteran infielder Paul DeJong, who was acquired in a trade with St. Louis on Aug. 1, was designated for assignment to make room for Bichette on the roster.

Cincinnati tied it at 3 with three runs in the bottom half of the fourth. Friedl led off with his 11th homer after the Reds went down in order in each of the first three innings. McLain then walked before De La Cruz hit a liner that caromed off the bottom of the wall in right.

McLain scored easily on the triple. Right fielder Cavan Biggio retrieved the ball and fired wildly back to the infield. The throw trickled through to foul territory beyond the third-base line, and De La Cruz raced home, beating third baseman Matt Chapman’s flip to the plate.

Williamson was charged with four runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings. The rookie left-hander went 3-0 with a 2.89 ERA in his previous seven starts.

First baseman Joey Votto helped Williamson escape a bases-loaded jam in the second with a leaping grab of Merrifield’s two-out line drive.


Blue Jays: OF George Springer (left ankle) was held out. He got hurt recently trying to beat out a double play. ... RHP Chad Green (concussion) is expected to throw at Triple-A Buffalo on Sunday and Tuesday.

Reds: INF Kevin Newman (strained left oblique) was placed on the 10-day injured list, and INF Noelvi Marte was recalled from Triple-A Louisville. Marte, one of the team’s top prospects, made his big league debut as a pinch runner in the ninth.


Reds RHP Hunter Greene (2-4, 3.93 ERA) is expected to come off the injured list and start Sunday. He had been sidelined by a hip issue. LHP Hyun Jin Ryu (1-1, 2.57 ERA) is expected to start for the Blue Jays.

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