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Professional

Reds’ Simon baffles Cubs

Alfredo Simon lowered his ERA to 0.86, and Cincinnati won for the 16th time in its last 17 games at Wrigley Field after a 3-1 decision on Friday afternoon.

Making his third start, Simon (2-1) allowed an unearned run in six-plus innings and sent the Cubs to their fifth straight loss. Jonathan Broxton pitched a hitless ninth for his second save, completing a six-hitter as the Reds stretched their winning streak to a season-best three.

Jeff Samardzija (0-2) gave up three runs – one earned – and six hits in seven innings with seven strikeouts and two walks.

Nationals 3, Cardinals 1: Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina’s throwing error combined with Michael Wacha’s wild pitch to allow two unearned runs in the seventh inning, breaking a tie and helping Gio Gonzalez and the Nationals get the win in Washington.

Gonzalez (3-1) allowed one run and four hits in seven innings, retiring the last 11 batters he faced. He finished with seven strikeouts and one walk as Washington ended an eight-game losing streak against St. Louis that dated to Game 5 of the teams’ 2012 NL division series.

Rangers 12, White Sox 0: Martin Perez pitched a three-hitter for his first career shutout, Leonys Martin drove in four runs and Texas routed Chicago in Arlington, Texas.

Martin homered and was one of four Rangers batters with three hits apiece. Robinson Chirinos also went deep.

Perez (3-0) retired his last 12 batters and struck out eight in his second complete game, including rookie Jose Abreu three times. Perez has thrown 17 straight scoreless innings.

after he went eight in a 1-0 win over Houston.

Martin had a two-run triple and Chirinos hit a two-run homer on the next pitch in seven-run third inning off Felipe Paulino (0-2). Martin homered for a 10-0 lead in the fourth.

Chirinos and Jim Adduci set career highs with three hits apiece. Alex Rios also had three hits and scored each time he reached base.

Prince Fielder, who came in hitting .164, reached base all five times he batted, including a run-scoring double. He also singled, walked twice and was hit by a pitch.

Chicago’s Alexei Ramirez extended a franchise record by getting a hit in his 17th straight game to start the season. His soft single to right in the fifth extended his streak to 21 games going back to last season.

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