AP Sports Writer
CINCINNATI (AP) — Ivan De Jesus Jr. homered for the second time in three games, and the Cincinnati Reds swept the Philadelphia Phillies with a 5-2 victory on Wednesday after losing shortstop Zack Cozart to a knee injury.
Cozart twisted his right ankle and knee as he tried to beat out a grounder in the first inning. He crumpled to the ground, rolled on his back and grabbed the knee, wincing in pain. He didn’t put any weight on the right leg as he was helped off the field and taken for an exam.
The Phillies fell to 7-23 away from Citizens Bank Park, their worst road record after 30 games since 1941. They have lost seven straight on the road — their worst such slump in two years — and have been swept three times in their last five series.
De Jesus, a 28-year-old utility player, hit his first career homer in the series opener, a tiebreaking two-run shot for a 6-4 win. His three-run homer on Wednesday off Jerome Williams (3-6) made it 4-0 in the first inning, the Reds’ sixth homer in two games.
Jon Moscot (1-1) got his first win in his second major league start. The 23-year-old right-hander gave up two runs and six hits in six innings. Aroldis Chapman retired the side in the ninth for his 12th save in 13 chances.
Brayan Pena singled four times and drove in a pair of runs. Joey Votto singled in four at-bats a day after his three-homer game.
Cozart’s injury overshadowed the Reds’ first sweep of Philadelphia since 2013. He’s among the NL’s top shortstops in numerous offensive categories. Cozart had homered in three of his last four games, leaving him with nine homers and 28 RBIs.
He’s also the Reds’ second-leading candidate for the All-Star Game that will be played in Cincinnati next month. Only third baseman Todd Frazier has gotten more fan votes.
Reds: Second baseman Brandon Phillips is day-to-day with a strained groin, injured in a slide into third base on Tuesday night. Center fielder Billy Hamilton was out of the lineup for the second day with a sore left hand.
Phillies: Following a day off, Philadelphia opens a series in Pittsburgh. Kevin Correia, who signed on Monday, makes his Phillies debut.
Reds: Michael Lorenzen (1-1) opens a four-game series at Wrigley Field, looking for his first win since May 5.
REDS 11, PHILLIES 2 (Tuesday night)
CINCINNATI (AP) — Joey Votto hit three homers in a game for the third time in his career — matching Johnny Bench as the only Reds players to do it — and Cincinnati piled up five total in a victory over Philadelphia.
Votto hit two of the Reds’ four homers off Aaron Harang (4-7), who had given up a total of four all season. Votto added a two-run homer in the seventh inning off Dustin McGowan, then grounded out in the eighth, finishing one shy of the major league record.
Anthony DeSclafani (5-4) matched his career high by fanning seven batters and gave up two runs in 6 1/3 innings to a lineup that struggles away from Citizens Bank Park.