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PIT@CIN: The Pirates win, secure home playoff game

The Pirates experienced the sweet smell of victory on Saturday in an 8-3 win over the Reds. That now means the National League Wild Card Game will be held in Pittsburgh on Tuesday between the two clubs.

With wins in their first two contests against the Reds in Cincinnati, the Pirates will go for the sweep on Sunday.

"We knew how big this series was, for getting that one game playoff at home," Pirates second baseman Neil Walker said. "To get it done the first two games I think says a lot. Was a good day all around for us as a team."

While Gerrit Cole and Johnny Cueto were originally scheduled to start Sunday's contest, both managers decided to switch things up because of Saturday's results. Now, Brandon Cumpton will start for the Pirates and Greg Reynolds gets the nod for the Reds, who will start Cueto in Tuesday's game.

Cumpton will be one of many young faces on the field for the Pirates, with manager Clint Hurdle deciding to give some regulars a rest with the Wild Card Game right around the corner.

The right-hander has made four starts this season, and he came out of the bullpen back on Sept. 22 against the Reds, allowing just three hits in three innings. In a start against Cincinnati on June 20, Cumpton went five innings and gave up two runs (one earned) on five hits for the no-decision.

Meanwhile, Reynolds will make his fifth start of the season. He last pitched on Sept. 18 against the Astros, allowing two runs on four hits in 3 2/3 innings of work for the no-decision.

Pirates: Morneau providing Gold Glove defense
• Justin Morneau's defensive skills at first base have made a huge impact on the Pirates since he was acquired from the Twins on Aug. 31.

"Defensively," Hurdle said, "he's made more than a handful of plays that made you go, 'Wow.'"

Morneau had a sequence of those plays in the ninth inning of the Pirates' postseason-clinching victory on Monday in Chicago, which Hurdle called "as sharp an inning as I've ever seen a first baseman have defensively."

On Monday night, with the Bucs trying to hold onto a 2-1 lead, Morneau picked up a loose ball in front of the mound and his flip to catcher Russell Martin nailed Nate Schierholtz for the game-ending out.

Reds: Votto proud of record
• First baseman Joey Votto knew with the season winding down that he was approaching Pete Rose's 1969 club record for reaching base in a season via a hit, walk or hit-by-pitch.

With a pair of singles in Friday's 4-1 loss to the Pirates, Votto reached for the 311th and 312th time to break Rose's mark.

"I was really very excited and really happy about that achievement," Votto said Saturday morning. "It's a combination of playing every day, which is something Pete was very good at. I don't know if it's a skill or luck, a determination or personality trait, but whatever it was that helped him play every single day, he did that so consistently throughout his career. That was the first step. I played every day. The second was the ability to get on base, be competitive and not make outs. It's a difficult thing to do. To put that combination together, I'm very proud of it."

Worth noting
• The Pirates have held an opponent to one run or fewer 40 times this season.

• The Pirates have homered in nine of their past 10 games (18 home runs total).

• Reds right fielder Jay Bruce has 43 doubles, 30 home runs and 109 RBIs this season, making him just two doubles shy of become only the 46th player in Major League history to produce a season of at least 45 doubles, 30 home runs and 100 RBIs. Comments