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>>Bryant, Contereas Lead Cubs Route of Reds

 

Kris Bryant hit his 24th home run before leaving with a bruised leg, Willson Contreras and Addison Russell also went deep, and the Chicago Cubs pounded the struggling Cincinnati Reds 10-4 on Monday.

Playing the NL Central's last-place team was just what the major league-leading Cubs needed after getting outscored 32-11 in a four-game sweep by the Mets in New York.

 

The Reds, meanwhile, continued their slide. They dismissed pitching coach Mark Riggins in an effort to shake up a staff with the majors' worst ERA, then lost for the 11th time in 13 games.

Bryant hit a two-run drive in the second inning and scored three times before exiting with a bruised lower left leg in the fifth.

 

John Lackey (7-4, 3.27 ERA) looks to get back to winning for Chicago, while Reds LHP Brandon Finnegan (3-7, 4.48) tries to bounce back from the shortest start of his career.

 

>>Sox Pound Yankees

 

Tim Anderson and Dioner Navarro each hit a two-run homer off CC Sabathia, helping James Shields and the Chicago White Sox beat the New York Yankees 8-2 on Monday.

Chicago had a string of 15 consecutive solo shots, matching a franchise record, before Anderson connected in the third inning, tying it at 2. Brett Lawrie hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the fifth before Navarro belted a drive to left field for his fifth homer.

 

Anderson went 2 for 4 for his 12th multihit game since he was promoted from Triple-A Charlotte on June 10. Navarro has seven RBIs in the last three games - all wins for resurgent Chicago.

Chase Headley hit a two-run homer for New York, which has lost three of four.

 

>>Pirates Double-Up Redbirds

 

Left-hander Jonathon Niese (7-6) turned in his strongest performance in almost a month for Pittsburgh and helped lead them to a 4-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals Monday afternoon.

Niese (7-6) allowed just one run on seven hits over 5 2-3 innings. He struck out three and walked one. Niese had given up at least four earned runs in each of his last four starts including surrendering eight earned runs in an 8-3 loss to St. Louis at home on June 12.

 

Pittsburgh has won five in a row, all on the road. St. Louis had a three-game winning streak snapped.

 

Gregory Polanco's two-run homer in the sixth off Carlos Martinez (7-6) put the Pirates ahead to stay 2-1. He added a solo shot in the eighth for the first two-homer game of his career.

 

The Cardinals went 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position and left 10 men on base.

 

Mike Leake (5-6, 4.13) will take on LHP Steven Brault (0-0, 0.00), who will be called up from Triple-A Indianapolis, in the second game of the four-game series on Tuesday.

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