- Associated Press - Thursday, April 9, 2015

CINCINNATI (AP) - At the end of a very long day, the Pirates came up empty again.

Joey Votto singled home the winning run in the 11th inning on Wednesday night, sending the Cincinnati Reds to a 5-4 victory over Pittsburgh in a four-hour game that started after a long rain delay.

Radhames Liz (0-1), the last reliever left for Pittsburgh, hit Zack Cozart in the back and walked Billy Hamilton with two outs in the 11th. Votto singled to end the game at 1:46 a.m. local time.

“An off-speed pitch he got off the end of the bat,” manager Clint Hurdle said.

J.J. Hoover (1-0) allowed one single over the last two innings.

The Reds are 2-0 for the first time since 2011, when they won their first five games.

Corey Hart’s pinch-hit single off Burke Badenhop put the Pirates ahead 4-3 in the seventh, but Votto tied it in the bottom of the inning with a single for his first RBI of the season. Votto missed most of last season with strained muscles above his left knee.

“It’s a dangerous lineup for sure,” said starter Gerrit Cole, who went five innings. “It feels like anytime Hamilton’s on base, Votto’s trying to move him over or drive him in.”

Hamilton had three singles, walked and stole three bases, keeping Cincinnati’s offense going.

“He’s pretty good at what he does,” Hurdle said. “We’ll see if we can come up with a little something. The best thing is to keep him off base.”

The Reds won the season opener on Monday 5-2 behind Todd Frazier’s three-run homer in the eighth, a game that included a 35-minute rain delay.

The start of Wednesday’s game was delayed by 2 hours, 34 minutes because of rain. Both starters struggled with their control after the long wait.

Cole gave up three runs in five innings, including Frazier’s solo homer in his first at-bat. He also let in a run with a wild pitch.

Mike Leake allowed three runs in 5 2-3 innings, including RBI doubles by Pedro Alvarez and Francisco Cervelli. He walked six and also threw a wild pitch. The no-decision kept Leake’s streak intact: He hasn’t lost to the Pirates since May 5, 2012, going 5-0 in his past 14 starts.

JOSH’S DAY

Pirates third baseman Josh Harrison went 1 for 5 after signing a four-year, $27.3 million contract before the game. The deal includes a pair of club options that could push the total to $48.2 million.

RAIN MEN

So far, the Pirates and Reds have played 6 hours, 31 minutes of baseball and sat through 3 hours, 9 minutes of rain delays in their first two games.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Pirates: RHP Charlie Morton threw on Monday without a problem. He’s on the DL recovering from surgery on his right hip last September. He’ll have at least one more throwing session before pitching in a simulated game.

Reds: RHP Homer Bailey had no problems after throwing 75 pitches at the Reds’ spring training complex in Arizona on Monday. He’s tentatively scheduled to make a rehab start for one of the minor league teams on April 12. Bailey is recovering from forearm surgery last September.

UP NEXT

Pirates: A.J. Burnett makes his first start since returning to the Pirates. He spent last season with the Phillies. Burnett is 7-6 with a 3.71 ERA in 16 games against Cincinnati.

Reds: RHP Anthony DeSclafani makes his Reds debut and sixth major league start overall. The Reds got him from Miami in December as part of the trade for Mat Latos. He’s never faced the Pirates.

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Follow Joe Kay on Twitter: http://twitter.com/apjoekay

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