CINCINNATI — Lorenzo Cain had a tiebreaking RBI single in the second inning, Ben Zobrist had four hits, and Kansas City benefited from a Cincinnati baserunning gaffe as the Royals beat the Reds 4-3 Wednesday night to complete a two-game sweep.
Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie left in the fifth with the 4-3 lead and the bases loaded and one out. Luke Hochevar (1-0) got Jay Bruce to pop up along the first base line. Bruce was out under the infield fly rule, but Jason Bourgeois tried to score when the ball dropped, and Hochevar threw to catcher Drew Butera, who easily tagged Bourgeois out to end the inning.
Ryan Madson and Kelvin Herrera each turned in one scoreless relief inning before Wade Davis pitched the ninth for his 10th save.
Zobrist had his eighth career four-hit game as the Royals completed a sweep of the four-game season series with Cincinnati. The Royals have won five straight and the Reds have lost five straight.
Keyvius Sampson (2-2) gave up the four runs and nine hits in 3 1/3 innings. He walked two and struck out two in his fourth career start.
Zobrist and Eric Hosmer both had RBI hits in the first inning to extend hitting streaks, Zobrist to six games (13 for 23, .565 average) and Hosmer to 10 (13 for 38, .342).
Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips tied the score with back-to-back solo homers in the bottom of the inning, Votto’s 22nd and Phillips’ ninth.
Cain came through with a two-run single in the second to give the Royals a 4-2 lead.
Eugenio Suarez cut the lead to 4-3 in the third with an RBI double to center field.
Guthrie lasted 4 1/3 innings, allowing seven hits and three runs with three walks, four strikeouts and a wild pitch.
The start of the game was delayed for 1 hour, 37 minutes by rain.
Royals: INF Omar Infante was available to play on Wednesday after being scratched from Tuesday’s starting lineup with back spasms. Manager Ned Yost said he would try to give Infante one more day and use him in Boston.
Reds: Phillips left the game after six innings with inflammation in his right biceps tendon.
Royals: LHP Danny Duffy (6-5, 4.03) starts the first game of Kansas City’s four-game series at Boston’s Fenway Park. The Royals are 8-2 in Duffy’s 10 starts since he came off the disabled list on June 24.
Reds: LHP John Lamb (0-1, 7.50) is scheduled to make his second career start when the Reds open a four-game series against the Diamondbacks on Thursday.