Bruce’s triple propels Reds past Bucs

Cincinnati's Jay Bruce is doused by Billy Hamilton after hitting a game-winning triple against the Pirates. (AP)

CINCINNATI (AP) – Jay Bruce hit an RBI triple in the ninth inning and the Cincinnati Reds capped a strong season-opening homestand, beating the Pittsburgh Pirates 2-1 Sunday.

The Reds took two of three from the Pirates and are off to a 5-1 start.

Brandon Phillips led off the ninth with a single. After a popout, Bruce tripled down the right field line against Arquimedes Caminero (0-1).

Former Pirates right-hander Ross Ohlendorf (2-0) escaped a first-and-second, one-out jam in the ninth to get the win.

Eugenio Suarez opened the Reds sixth with his fourth home run of the season, tying at 1. He had three hits in the game.

Suarez is the first Reds player with four homers in the first six games since Adam Dunn had four in six in 2004, the Reds said in citing the Elias Sports Bureau.

Tim Melville, a non-roster player in spring training, made his major league debut for the Reds and looked nervous. The 26-year-old righty needed 37 pitches to negotiate a 20-minute, scoreless top of the first that ended with the bases loaded.

Melville threw 92 pitches, 55 for strikes, while lasting four innings. Pittsburgh stranded eight runners against him, six in scoring position.

Jeff Locke allowed one run in six innings in his season debut.

Chris Stewart, batting for the first time this season, homered in the Pirates second.

Reds left fielder Adam Duvall saved a run in the eighth, throwing out Josh Harrison trying to score from second on John Jaso’s single. Pirates manager Clint Hurdle challenged the call, which was upheld.

That was Pittsburgh’s only hit in 14 at-bats with runners in scoring position.