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  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Baltimore Orioles' Nick Hundley watches his three-run home run in the first inning of an interleague baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Baltimore Orioles' Nelson Cruz rounds the bases after hitting a two-run home run in the first inning of an interleague baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Chris Tillman throws to the Cincinnati Reds in the first inning of an interleague baseball game, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart, right, pats starting pitcher Mike Leake on the chest during a visit to the mound after Leake walked Baltimore Orioles' J.J. Hardy in the first inning of an interleague baseball game, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore. Baltimore scored six runs in the first.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Mike Leake throws to the Baltimore Orioles in the first inning of an interleague baseball game, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Baltimore Orioles' Nelson Cruz watches his two-run home run in the first inning of an interleague baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore.

  • Patrick Semansky / AP Photo

    Baltimore Orioles' Nick Hundley (40) crosses home plate in front of Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart, right, after hitting a three-run home run in the first inning of an interleague baseball game, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Baltimore. Baltimore's Kelly Johnson, second from left, J.J. Hardy and Jonathan Schoop (6) look on.

Orioles beat Reds 9-7 to complete 3-game sweep

Published: Thursday, Sep. 4, 2014 - 7:51 pm
Last Modified: Thursday, Sep. 4, 2014 - 8:01 pm

J.J. Hardy hit a tiebreaking two-run single in the seventh inning, and the Baltimore Orioles gave away a six-run lead before rebounding to beat the Cincinnati Reds 9-7 Thursday night for a three-game sweep.

After completing a 9-2 homestand against Tampa Bay, Minnesota and the Reds, the AL East-leading Orioles (82-57) are assured a third straight winning season for the first time since 1992-94.

Nelson Cruz hit his major-league leading 37th home run in a six-run first inning, but the Reds chipped away and finally pulled even with a four-run seventh.

Nick Markakis led off the bottom half with a single off Manny Parra (0-2), and Hardy put Baltimore back in front with a bases-loaded single on a 3-1 pitch from Sam LeCure.

Tommy Hunter (3-2) worked 1 1-3 innings and Zach Britton got three outs for his 33rd save.

Read more articles by DAVID GINSBURG



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