CINCINNATI — With two swings, Scott Van Slyke went from backup outfielder to star of the game.
Van Slyke drove in a career-high four runs with two homers off struggling left-hander Tony Cingrani, and the Dodgers pulled away to a 6-2 victory Monday night over the Reds, a rare comfortable win in their pitching-dominated series.
Van Slyke hit a solo homer and a three-run shot off Cingrani, who could lose his spot in the rotation when Mat Latos returns from the disabled list this week. Cingrani gave up a career-high six runs.
The Dodgers like Van Slyke for his versatility. He has started four games in center, 11 in left and three at first base. The problem is that there's no room for him to have a regular spot.
"I know what I'm here for, so I don't mind it," said Van Slyke, who had a career-high three hits. "I'm not going to complain."
Nor will the Dodgers.
"He's been good for us all year," manager Don Mattingly said. "This guy's just kind of slowly showing his value over time."
Six of the previous seven meetings between the teams had been decided by one run, with Cincinnati holding a 4-3 advantage in those games.