5 things to know about Reds series-clinching win vs. Pirates

The Cincinnati Reds beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 4-2 Thursday afternoon at Great American Ball Park to win their first series since taking the opening three sets of the season.

Joey Votto had a pair of RBI doubles, and Adam Duvall drove in Votto with a single in the fourth and triple in the fifth to give the Reds all the offense they would need to take three of four from the Pirates and improve to 6-1 against them this season.

Starter Tim Adleman held the Pirates to two runs on six hits over six innings to earn his first victory of the season. Adleman (1-1) struck out five and walked one while equaling his longest outing in four starts this season.

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Michael Lorenzen followed with two hitless innings of relief, and Raisel Iglesias worked the ninth for his fifth save.

Here are five things to know about the victory:

Fleet feet

Billy Hamilton recorded his MLB-leading 16th stolen base and 200th of his career with a swipe of second in the fifth inning.

It was the 424th game of Hamilton’s career, making him the fastest player in Reds history to get to 200, and fourth fastest in the majors since 1900 (Vince Coleman 280 games, Tim Raines 361, Rickey Henderson 366).

Hamilton said he was unaware he was approaching the milestone, even after trainer Tomas Vera gave him a Roman numeral hint with one of the messages he typically writes on the speedster’s sliding pad for inspiration.

“He wrote something a couple days ago that said ‘3 more til CC’ and I was wondering what it was,” Hamilton said. “He said you’ll know once you get there. Now I know.”

Hamilton’s 200 steals have him in seventh place on the Reds all-time list behind Joe Morgan (406), Barry Larkin (379), Dave Concepcion (321), Bob Bescher (320), Eric Davis (270) and Vada Pinson (221).

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Even again

The win was the fourth in five games for the Reds, bringing them back to the .500 mark at 14-14.

Last year the Reds were 11-17 through 28 games.

“I was telling all my friends that came from Mississippi that winning is fun,” Hamilton said. “You can leave the clubhouse in a good mood. When you lose, you’re just ready to go home and not see anybody. They want to go have food and I just want to get to the house because losing is not fun. For us to get back to .500 gives us a little more confidence to move on to the next series.”

The Reds, who had fallen a season-most three games under .500 prior to their current surge, open a three-game home set against San Francisco on Friday.

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Short sub

A day off for Zack Cozart meant just the third start of the season for Arismendy Alcantara, who responded by going 3 for 3 with a stolen base.

“That was really nice,” Price said. “The bench players, with the exception of (Scooter) Gennett, don’t get to play a whole lot. The two catchers are going to alternate and Scooter’s going to find his way in there, but the other guys, it’s harder to get them regular time because we have a relatively set lineup.

“For him to go in there and pick up a game and do well, it’s just a boost,” Price added. “I know it’s a boost for him personally, and it’s just nice to see these guys come in when they do get a chance to play and so something special.”

It was the first multi-hit game for Alcantara since Sept. 13, 2014, when he went 2 for 5 for the Chicago Cubs.

Peraza poke

With Cozart resting, Jose Peraza moved back into the No. 2 spot in the batting order and went 1 for 4.

His fourth-inning single to right started a five-hit inning that gave the Reds the lead for good while extending his hitting streak to a career-high eight games. It’s the longest current streak on the team.

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Raisel reprise

Closer Raisel Igelsias pitched on back-to-back days for the first time this season.

The last time Iglesias pitched on consecutive days he allowed four runs on three hits against the Cubs for a blown save in the 2016 season finale.

Iglesias is perfect in five save attempts this season, leaving him one shy of the career-high six he recorded in eight chances last year.

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