Reds beat Nationals 9-2 to keep playoff hopes alive

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CINCINNATI (AP) – Tyler Stephenson and Nick Castellanos scored consecutive home runs, Kyle Farmer opened the game with a Grand Slam and the Cincinnati Reds kept their low playoff hopes alive by scrapping the Washington Nationals 9-2 on Sunday.

Cincinnati won their third straight win, 5 1/2 games behind St. Louis for the second NL wildcard with six games left, tied with Philadelphia. The Cardinals played later on Sunday.

At 81-75, the Reds made consecutive seasons without a loss for the first time since 2012 and ’13.

Tyler Mahle (13-6) allowed an undeserved run and three hits in six innings as the Reds won a third game in a row and won a series for the first time since a four-game sweep of Miami August 19-22 . They had lost eight series in a row before splitting two games against Pittsburgh.

NL beat leader Juan Soto from Washington went 0 for 3 and lowered his average to 0.322.

Josh Rogers (2-1) gave up three runs, seven hits and a season high of four walks in 4 2/3 innings, his fifth start since Tommy John’s surgery.

India misplayed Lane Thomas’ grounder, allowing the ball to ricochet off his body onto right field, causing a run error in game five.

The Indians doubled in front of the bottom half, Stephenson hit a homer in the opposing field to the right and Castellanos followed with his best 32.

Farmer made it 7-1 in the sixth against Ryne Harper with his career slam.

TRAINING ROOM

Reds: LHP Amir Garrett felt uncomfortable pitching in the eighth inning. After speaking to an athletic coach and throwing a few warm-up fields, he pulled out the final of the inning.

NEXT

Nationals: RHP Josiah Gray (1-2), the scheduled starter in Colorado on Monday, allowed two runs in six innings of his first career start in Miami on Wednesday.

Reds: LHP Reiver Sanmartin is called up by Triple-A Louisville to make his major league debut.

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