ST. LOUIS (AP) – Tyler O’Neill homered twice and Jack Flaherty tossed seven sharp innings as the St. Louis Cardinals beat Cincinnati 5-2 Sunday, the Reds’ seventh straight loss.
O’Neill, who came off the injured list on Friday after missing 13 games with a right groin strain, hit solo home runs in the second and fifth innings.
The Reds’ skid is their worst since an eight-game slide from March 31-April 7, 2019.
Cincinnati manager David Bell was ejected in the sixth inning. He became upset after Jonathan India was hit on the helmet by a pitch from Flaherty. India stayed in the game to run the bases but was removed after the inning.
Jesse Winker homered for the Reds and extended his hitting streak to 10 games, the longest active string in the majors.
Flaherty (4-0) retired the first 10 batters and allowed just three hits in a 95-pitch stint. He struck out six and did not walk a batter.
Alex Reyes earned his fifth save. He got Tucker Barnhart to ground out with the bases loaded to end the game
O’Neill was 0 for 4 in his return prior to Sunday. The two-homer game was the second of his career — he connected for pair of two-run homers in a 7-0 win over Pittsburgh on June 15, 2019.
Dylan Carlson added three hits and drove in a run. Paul Goldschmidt had two RBIs.
Luis Castillo (1-2) gave up four runs on six hits over five innings. He struck out three and walked one.
Tyler Naquin added a pinch-hit, RBI single in the Reds eighth.
Reds: INF Mike Moustakas remains sidelined with a viral infection. He hopes to return sometime during the Reds three-game series that begins on Monday in Los Angeles.
Cardinals: C Yadier Molina missed his second successive game with sore tendon in his right foot. St. Louis manager Mike Shildt says he could have played on Sunday, but the team is taking a cautious approach.
“We don’t want to do anything to compromise anything on a long-term basis,” Shildt said.
Reds: RHP Tyler Mahle (1-1, 1.74) will face Los Angeles Dodgers LHP Julio Urias (3-0, 2.81) on Monday in the first of a three-game set in Los Angeles. Left-handed hitters are just 3 for 43 this season against Mahle with 20 strikeouts this season.
Cardinals: RHP Adam Wainwright (0-2, 5.03) will face Philadelphia RHP Zack Wheeler (1-2, 3.80) on Monday in the first of a four-game set in St. Louis. Wainwright is 7-3 with a 3.10 ERA in 14 lifetime starts against the Phillies.