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    hong wei
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    When Brewers pitchers went over the strengths and weaknesses of Cincinnati’s hitters to prepare for their series [url=http://www.officialbruinsproonline.com/authentic-adidas-tuukka-rask-jersey]Adidas Tuukka Rask Jersey[/url] , they included reliever Michael Lorenzen in the mix.

    They need to do more studying.

    Lorenzen hit the second grand slam by a Reds pitcher in a week – and his third homer in his last three at-bats – as Cincinnati pulled away to a 12-3 victory Saturday, ending a seven-game losing streak against Milwaukee.

    Lorenzen’s pinch-hit grand slam off Jacob Barnes in the seventh inning completed an eight-run rally, Cincinnati’s biggest of the season. Lorenzen’s fifth career homer drew a curtain call from the crowd of 24,640.

    ”It was a surreal feeling, for sure,” Lorenzen said. ”I love this game and everything about it.”

    It was the reliever’s second homer in the series. He also had a solo shot Friday during Milwaukee’s 8-2 win.

    ”The guy’s swinging the bat really well, that’s for sure,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. ”We treat him as a position player. We covered him in scouting meetings. We’re going to have to make some adjustments.”

    One week earlier, Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani hit a grand slam off Cubs left-hander Brian Duensing at Great American Ball Park.

    Lorenzen avoided the temptation to swing at a slider, and then hit a fastball deep to left field.

    ”The Reds have always put together some good-hitting pitchers, going back to Travis Wood and those guys,” Brewers catcher Erik Kratz said. ”You have to know who those guys are and where they want the ball and not throw it there.”

    Tyler Mahle struck out a career-high 12 batters in 5 2/3 innings, three shy of the Reds’ rookie record. David Hernandez (3-0) pitched the top of the seventh.

    The Reds fanned 18 batters, a club record for a nine-inning game.

    The Brewers’ depleted bullpen couldn’t hold a one-run lead in the seventh. Cincinnati’s first eight batters reached safely against three relievers, with left-hander Mike Zagurski (0-1) taking the loss in his first major league appearance since 2013.

    The NL Central leaders also were missing two starting position players. Christian Yelich left Thursday’s game with back tightness, and Ryan Braun came out of Friday’s game with the same issue. Counsell said Braun could be available on Sunday.

    Eric Thames homered off Mahle, his 14th home run in 22 career games against Cincinnati. Thames hit 10 last year, the most by a Brewers player against the Reds in one season.

    LORENZEN LORE

    The last pinch-hit grand slam by a Reds player came from Chris Heisey on April 13, 2014, against Tampa Bay. Lorenzen’s three homers this season are the most by a Reds pitcher since Micah Owings had three in 2009. The last major league pitcher to homer in three straight at-bats was Colorado’s Mike Hampton in 2001.

    POWER SURGE

    In the last eight days, Reds pitchers have produced four homers – three by Lorenzen [url=http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-ryan-getzlaf-jersey]Adidas Ryan Getzlaf Jersey[/url] , one by DeSclafani. For the season, Lorenzen is 4 for 6 with three homers and six RBIs.

    MAHLE’S STRIKEOUTS

    Mahle’s 12 strikeouts were the most by a Reds pitcher since Amir Garrett also fanned 12 Orioles on April 19, 2017. The club record for strikeouts by a rookie is 15 by Gary Nolan on June 7, 1967, against the Giants.

    TRADING PLACES

    With the game out of hand, Kratz moved to the mound for the eighth inning – his third career pitching appearance – and gave up a pair of runs.

    ”I’d rather catch nine innings and do high-fives,” he said.

    REDS DEAL

    The Reds sent minor league catcher Joe Hudson to the Angels for cash. The 27-year-old Hudson has never played in the majors. He batted .235 with no homers and three RBIs in 16 games for Triple-A Louisville this season.

    TRAINER’S ROOM

    Brewers: RHP Zach Davies had a setback in what was expected to be his final minor league rehab assignment as he recovers from a sore shoulder. He lasted only three innings and gave up 10 runs and three hits for Class A Wisconsin on Friday night, leaving after just 48 pitches because of a sore back.

    Reds: RHP Homer Bailey will make his fourth rehab start Tuesday for Triple-A Louisville. He’s been sidelined since June 2 because of a sore right knee. Bailey is 1-7 with a 6.68 ERA.

    UP NEXT

    Brewers: Freddy Peralta (3-0) makes his fifth start. The Brewers are 4-0 in his starts. Opponents are batting .093 against the right-hander.

    Reds: Matt Harvey (3-5) makes his 10th start for the Reds, who got him from the Mets in a trade for catcher Devin Mesoraco on May 8. Harvey has allowed six runs in his last three starts spanning 17 2/3 innings.

    The Steelers survived one week without Le’Veon Bell.

    Maybe they can do it again.

    Making his first NFL start, James Conner helped Pittsburgh forget that Bell 鈥?the team’s disgruntled star running back 鈥?isn’t around and may not be back anytime soon.

    Conner scored two touchdowns, rushed for 135 yards and added 57 more on five catches as the Steelers escaped Sunday with a 21-21 tie against the Cleveland Browns, who ended their 17-game losing streak without winning.

    Conner was more than an adequate fill-in for Bell, who remains separated from the Steelers in an ugly contract dispute.

    While his teammates slopped around in the rain at FirstEnergy Stadium, Bell continued his holdout in South Florida as his replacement gave the Steelers hope they’ll be able to withstand not having one of their biggest stars.

    Conner could be their newest one.

    The anti-Bell.

    “I’m so tired of Le’Veon,” Steelers right guard David DeCastro told reporters. “I’m so tired of it. Let’s just worry about the guys that are here. I know you guys have stories to write and what not. I love Le’Veon, but we have to worry about the guys that are here. That’s the only people that matter.”

    Conner scored on a 4-yard run in the second quarter and added a 22-yarder in the fourth as the Steelers opened a 21-7 lead that appeared safe.

    However, as Pittsburgh appeared on the verge of putting the Browns away, Conner had his lone blemish on an otherwise stellar day.

    Running right, Conner got stripped by Browns end Myles Garrett and his fumble led to the Browns quickly scoring two touchdowns in the final 7:32 to force overtime.

    Cleveland had a chance to win it, but linebacker T.J. Watt added a blocked field goal to his four-sack game by getting a hand on Zane Gonzalez’s 43-yard field-goal attempt with 9 seconds left.

    Bell’s messy situation cast a shadow over the Steelers all week, bringing a distraction to a team that usually avoids drama. The stand-off could last for a while [url=http://www.officialmapleleafsproshop.com/authentic-adidas-frederik-andersen-jersey]Frederik Andersen Jersey[/url] , and if it does, Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin, his staff and the Steelers have to feel better about what Conner can provide.

    “He did some really great things,” said superstar receiver Antonio Brown. “He ran well and brought great energy all day. I was excited to see him make some plays, not only in the run game, but in the pass game as well.”

    On a day when quarterback Ben Roethlisberger struggled throwing three interceptions and fumbling twice, Conner was solid and steady.

    “Pressure is always there,” said Conner, who survived a cancer scare while he was at Pitt. “You’re either feeling pressure or applying pressure. I was trying to apply the pressure today. There were no nerves or nothing. Just playing football.”

    It looked that way. Conner patiently looked for running lanes, taking what Cleveland’s defense gave him and never trying to do too much.

    The 23-year-old finished with 192 total yards, matching Bell’s best game from last season.

    “I thought he played well,” said Roethlisberger, who struggled from the outset. “Ran hard, caught the ball well. Made plays for us. I’m proud of the way he played for this team.”

    Conner took it all in stride. Following the game, he casually accepted congratulations while dressing and came across as composed off the field as he was on it.

    “It is what I expect,” he said of his performance. “It’s the mentality of our offense. We feel like we’re going to run the ball when we want to run the ball so I know the mentality of those guys up front. I knew the lanes were going to be there. I knew today was going to be a good day on the ground, just not enough to win.

    “I have confidence in myself and the guys in front of me blocking, so it’s what we expect to do.”

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