Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 8/13/13
Brandon Phillips remained in the No. 4 spot in the lineup Monday -- even with the return of Ryan Ludwick. Phillips played the role of a cleanup hitter to perfection. He hit a two-run home run in the seventh inning to lift the Reds to a 2-0 victory over the Chicago Cubs before a crowd of 33277 at Wrigley Field. Phillips is showing signs of emerging from the long slump that followed the hit-by-pitch he took on the left forearm in Pittsburgh on June 1. He's 12-for-40 with three home runs and eight RBI over his last 10 games. He leads the majors with 17 game-winning RBI. Phillips told reporters after the game that wasn't speaking to the media. The two runs were all Mat Latos needed. He went eight shutout innings and allowed six hits walked none and struck out nine. He threw 94 pitches 68 strikes. "That's what we needed" Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "Big Latos gave us exactly what we needed." Aroldis Chapman pitched the ninth for his 28th save. Latos (12-3) has been on a roll. He came into the start 3-0 with a 1.73 ERA since the All-Star break. He is 16-3 over his last 31 starts. He was coming off a start in which he went 7 1/3 innings and did not allow a run. He said afterward that he didn't have good stuff in that one. He did Monday.
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