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Adleman's hitless effort leads Reds

MLB.com

MESA, Ariz. -- Tim Adleman threw three hitless innings, Patrick Kivlehan hit his first spring home run, and the Reds took advantage of miscues by the Cubs to post an 8-4 victory on Friday in front of 15,037 at Sloan Park. Three Reds batters were hit by pitches with the bases loaded in a five-run third inning.

Adleman, who was 4-4 in 13 starts last season with the Reds and is a candidate for their 2017 rotation, walked one and struck out two.

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MESA, Ariz. -- Tim Adleman threw three hitless innings, Patrick Kivlehan hit his first spring home run, and the Reds took advantage of miscues by the Cubs to post an 8-4 victory on Friday in front of 15,037 at Sloan Park. Three Reds batters were hit by pitches with the bases loaded in a five-run third inning.

Adleman, who was 4-4 in 13 starts last season with the Reds and is a candidate for their 2017 rotation, walked one and struck out two.

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"It was a lot better today, the command overall," said Adleman, who did not fare well in his debut vs. the Giants on Sunday. "But the biggest difference was being able to find the bottom of the zone with the sinker. That pitch, when it's up, is very easy to hit. When it's down, it's very tough to hit. That was the biggest difference for me today."

Video: CIN@CHC: Price discusses great pitching in win

The Cubs were held hitless until top prospect Eloy Jimenez belted his first spring home run, connecting against Jumbo Diaz with one out in the eighth. Minor Leaguer Yasiel Balaguert added a three-run shot as Chicago began to make up for some earlier gaffes.

The Cubs' problems started in the first inning. The Reds' Jose Peraza singled to center to lead off the game and Albert Almora Jr. misplayed the ball, allowing Peraza to reach third. He scored one out later on Eugenio Suarez's single.

Peraza went 2-for-4 to lower his Spring Training average to .563. He's hit in all five of the Reds' Cactus League games.

Cincinnati sent 10 batters to the plate in the third and took advantage of Chicago's control problems to go ahead, 6-0. The Reds loaded the bases and Aaron Brooks then hit Suarez with a pitch to force in a run. One out later, Brooks plunked Dilson Herrera and another run scored. Dallas Beeler replaced Brooks, and he hit Desmond Jennings and walked Tucker Barnhart to plate two more runs. One more run tallied when Hernan Iribarren grounded into a fielder's choice.

Mike Montgomery, a candidate for the Cubs' fifth-starter spot, gave up two hits and struck out three in one inning in his second spring start. He tried to lobby for another inning, but the Cubs told the lefty that he'd reach his pitch limit. Plus, Montgomery had a 60-plus-pitch side session prior to Friday's game in which he was able to work on some things.

"[The side session] was one of those days when I said, 'I'm going to get on the mound and keep throwing until I find it,'" Montgomery said. "It could've been 20 [pitches], it could've been 50 or 60, but I was going to keep throwing."

The more work, the better he feels. Montgomery said he "felt like a pitcher again" on Friday.

It was a nice day on the mound as well for Reds prospect and rotation candidate Robert Stephenson, who struck out four over his two innings after being hit hard in his first game of spring.

"All I want to do out here is just continue to pitch the way I did today," Stephenson said. "The rest of it is in the coaches' and front office's hands."

Up next
Cubs: Kyle Hendricks makes his first Cactus League start on Saturday when the Cubs host the Dodgers at Sloan Park. First pitch will be 2:05 p.m. CT. Hendricks is hoping to build off last year when he finished as the Major League leader with a 2.13 ERA. Relievers Pedro Strop, Hector Rondon and Carl Edwards Jr. also will make their spring debuts. Fans can watch the game live on MLB.TV or listen live via an exclusive free webcast at cubs.com.

Reds: Scott Feldman will make his second start when the Reds face the Royals at 3:05 p.m. ET Saturday in Goodyear. Rotation candidate Cody Reed and Drew Storen are also slated to pitch. The game can be heard live on Gameday Audio.

Watch almost 300 Spring Training games, WBC 2017 and every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.