GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Using an eight-run bottom of the eighth, the Reds stormed back from a six-run deficit to take a 9-7 victory over the Royals' split-squad club on Saturday at Goodyear Ballpark. The game winner was Arismendy Alcantara's three-run homer.It was 7-1 Kansas City when Reds outfield prospect Jesse
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Using an eight-run bottom of the eighth, the Reds stormed back from a six-run deficit to take a 9-7 victory over the Royals' split-squad club on Saturday at Goodyear Ballpark. The game winner was Arismendy Alcantara's three-run homer.
It was 7-1 Kansas City when Reds outfield prospect Jesse Winker, serving as the designated hitter, hit an RBI single off lefty Jonathan Sanchez to make it a 3-for-4 day. Another run scored when Sanchez walked Stuart Turner with the bases loaded before Minor Leaguer Blake Trahan scorched a two-run double to the gap in right-center and Gabriel Guerrero hit an RBI single to make it a one-run game.
Right-handed reliever Reid Redman replaced Sanchez and saw his 3-2 pitch smoked to right field by Alcantara for the homer that put Cincinnati ahead.
"The thing is, he's always hit for better average as a right-handed hitter, but he's hit for a bit of power from the left side," Reds manager Bryan Price said of Alcantara. "That was something. I was hoping he would put something into play in the outfield in that situation. He ends up getting a ball up and drives it out of the ballpark. … That was wonderful to see us come back and that second group come in and drop the eight-spot to win it."
Royals starter Jason Vargas pitched two innings and allowed one earned run on three hits with three strikeouts. Following a two-out single by Patrick Kivlehan, Rob Brantly plated the Reds' first run with a double to right field.
"I was just able to get a few more outs quicker," Vargas said. "Lines change, but that doesn't necessarily mean I felt any better one time or the other. It's just kind of how it played out today. I was able to get some guys to swing and miss and get some strikeouts. They put one on the board there when I was in a position to get out of that inning."
It was a solid outing for Reds starter Scott Feldman, who worked three scoreless innings with one hit, one hit batter and three strikeouts.
"It was a good day," Feldman said. "I tried to get on the changeup program today and threw a lot of them. Me and Brantly talked a lot about that today and called it a lot and did a great job behind the plate."
Royals Up Next: Left-hander Danny Duffy makes his final start before he departs for the World Baseball Classic as the Royals travel to Scottsdale to face the Giants in a 2:05 p.m. CT matchup on Sunday. Left-hander Matt Strahm and right-hander Joakim Soria also are expected to pitch.
Reds Up Next: Second baseman Jose Peraza, who has hits in each of his first five games while batting .563 this spring, is scheduled to be back in the lineup when the Reds play the Angels in Tempe at 3:05 p.m. ET on Sunday. Left-hander Brandon Finnegan will be the starting pitcher.
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Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.