Reds, Phils to resume scoreless battle

The Reds’ and Phillies’ bats had no bite on Bark in the Park night at Great American Ball Park, but Mother Nature did show her power.

The second game of the three-game series was postponed in the middle of the ninth on Tuesday with the score tied at 0-0. The game will resume at that point at 5:30 p.m. today, though the Reds announced, “Tomorrow’s game is not an extension of tonight’s Bark in the Park event, and pets will not be admitted.”

The game started at 8:30 after a one hour, 20 minute rain delay. The rain stayed away and then returned with a vengeance in the ninth. Zack Cozart, Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips are due up for the Reds when play resumes.

Between the rain delays, the Reds’ Homer Bailey continued a stretch of strong pitching performances at Great American Ball Park. He gave up one run in seven innings in his last start at home in 2012, Game 3 of the National League Division Series. He pitched six scoreless innings April 5 against the Nationals in his first start of 2013.

Despite being 0-3 lifetime in six starts against the Phillies with a 5.29 ERA, he surrendered no runs and two hits in eight innings Tuesday. He also matched a career high with 10 strikeouts.

Bailey credited catcher Ryan Hanigan for his solid outing.

“We were on the same page all night,” Bailey said. “A 0-0 game, you have to stay sharp. It probably makes it easy to stay focused. A good fastball tonight. Our location early on with our fastball and curve was really good and a good slider. We knew what a good hitting team they are. We knew we had to mix it up in later innings.”

The Phillies had just one runner in scoring position in the first seven innings. Michael Young reached second base in the second with two outs, but was stranded there when Laynce Nix popped out to third. In the fourth, Chase Utley singled with one, but he was caught stealing second by Ryan Hanigan.

Phillies starter Kyle Kendrick, who had allowed two earned runs or less in 11 of his last 15 starts on the road, struggled in his first start of the season April 5 when he gave up five earned runs in 5 2/3 innings against the Royals, but he got back on track April 10 by allowing two earned runs in six innings against the Mets.

Kendrick built on that success in his second start and matched Bailey through seven innings. He gave up two hits, walked two and struck out four.

The Reds’ only hits against Kendrick were a a one-out single from Zack Cozart in the first and a one-out single by Hanigan in the fifth. That was Hanigan’s third hit in 11 games. He had 10 hits in the first 11 games last season.

“Both sides were dealing,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “That was a pitching matchup. I really hated to take Homer out, but we really wanted to get some runs before the rains came. They told us it was coming.”

Aroldis Chapman pitched a perfect ninth for the Reds with two strikeouts. He has fanned 13 of the 27 batters he has faced this season in eight appearances.

Todd Frazier helped Chapman with a diving stop of the only ball the Phillies put in play against Chapman.

The third and final game of the series at 7:10 tonight pits the Reds’ Mike Leake (0-0, 6.75 ERA) against John Lannan (0-0, 2.77). That game will start no earlier than 7:10, but the start time could depend on how quickly the first game ends.

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