CINCINNATI (AP) — Another tough game for Tony Cingrani has the Cincinnati Reds wondering what to do with the only left-hander in their rotation.
Scott Van Slyke drove in a career-high four runs with two homers off Cingrani, and the Los Angeles Dodgers pulled away to a 6-2 victory over the Reds on Monday night, a rare comfortable win in their pitching-dominated series.
Van Slyke hit a solo homer and a three-run shot off Cingrani (2-7), who could lose his spot in the rotation when Mat Latos returns from the disabled list later this week. Cingrani gave up a career-high six runs in 4 2-3 innings of his fifth straight loss.
The Reds could move Cingrani into the bullpen or send him back to Triple-A to get his game back in shape.
"It's a tough thing," manager Bryan Price said. "When we add Mat, we'll have 13 major league pitchers for 12 spots. That's not to say Cingrani won't be part of the process.
"We'll be making a very difficult decision. We've been discussing things, and we'll be coming up with a decision in the next few days."
Dan Haren (6-4) gave up five hits in 5 1-3 innings, including Ryan Ludwick's solo homer, for his first win since May 12. Brandon League escaped a bases-loaded, no-outs threat in the eighth by getting Ludwick to hit a comebacker that led to a home-to-first double play.
The Dodgers have gone 3-1 at the start of their seven-game trip to Colorado and Cincinnati despite hip injuries to right fielder Yasiel Puig and second baseman Dee Gordon. Puig was back in the lineup on Monday and had a single and a walk. Gordon pinch hit in the ninth and beat out an infield single.
The Dodgers and Reds have played a lot of close games the last two seasons. Six of their last seven had been decided by one run, with Cincinnati holding a 4-3 advantage in those games.
Van Slyke made this a comfortable win for the Dodgers, getting a career-high three hits. In addition to the homers, he singled and walked twice, reaching base in all five plate appearances.
The center fielder came into the game with four homers and seven RBIs. He led off the second inning with a homer and ended Cingrani's outing with a three-run shot in the fifth that made it 6-2. It was his second career two-homer game.