Cincinnati dumps three-game slump

CINCINNATI (AP) -- For the second time in a week, Cory Lidle was
better than Tom Glavine.

Lidle shut down the New York Mets in his second straight start,
leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 2-0 victory Wednesday night that
was as surprising as it was gratifying.

Adam Dunn had two hits off Glavine (7-5), including a solo homer
that turned it into a bookend game. Lidle and the Reds also beat
Glavine 6-2 in New York last Thursday.

It's tough enough to beat Glavine once. Few pitchers can pull it
off twice in a row.

"It's the challenge," said Lidle (6-5), who gave up three
singles in seven innings. "It's something I look forward to. In my
eyes, he's a Hall of Famer. To have a chance to face him twice in a
week and to come out on top is awesome."

Glavine has a 2.16 ERA that is by far the best in the majors,
but the Mets' offense is second-to-last in the NL in scoring. All
it takes is one mistake to bring him down.

It came in the third inning, when he left a belt-high fastball
over the middle of the plate for Dunn. Glavine didn't even bother
to watch the ball fly deep into the seats in center.

"I don't know about that guy," said Dunn, who hit only the
seventh homer off Glavine this season. "He's just good. It's like
he knows what you're thinking. If you're sitting on a changeup,
it's a fastball to tie you up every time.

"It wasn't anything I did. I think he made a mistake and left a
ball over the middle. That's not going to happen many times in a

The Reds snapped a three-game losing streak behind Lidle, who
has held his former team to two runs and 12 hits in 15 innings over
his last two starts. He said he pitched the Mets the same way in
both games.

"I had a pretty good plan," he said. "I watch video to try to
find what their weaknesses are, and attack their weaknesses."

Todd Jones pitched a perfect eighth and Danny Graves completed
the combined four-hitter for his 30th save in 37 chances. Graves
has reached the 30-save mark faster than any pitcher since the save
became an official statistic in 1969.

The Reds drew their eighth capacity crowd of the season for a
Sean Casey bobblehead giveaway. Casey was out of the lineup for a
second straight game because of a strained calf, but spent more
than a half-hour signing bobbleheads before the game.

Ken Griffey Jr. also was out of the lineup for a second
consecutive game because of a sore left calf.

Cincinnati's patchwork lineup got the most out of its limited
chances against Glavine, who is 25-12 career against the Reds.

D'Angelo Jimenez singled in the second and Lidle extended the
inning with a two-out single, only the sixth hit of his career.
Ryan Freel then singled sharply to left for a 1-0 lead.

An inning later, Glavine made his mistake to Dunn, who blew a
big, pink bubble as he rounded third on his 23rd homer, second only
to Philadelphia's Jim Thome for the major league lead.

Glavine got an extra day of rest when the Mets scrambled their
rotation, and had trouble with his control at the outset because he
felt so fresh.

"When I feel good, I try to throw it by people," Glavine said.
"By the third inning, I got my sinker back and my changeup back
and my control was back."

The Mets' offense was still missing. Glavine left for a
pinch-hitter in the seventh after giving up a total of seven hits
and a walk. He has limited opponents to two or fewer runs in 13 of
his 17 starts.

Lidle gave up only two infield hits through the first six
innings -- Ty Wigginton's single in the second and Glavine's bunt
single in the sixth. He faded in the seventh, when Cliff Floyd
singled and the Mets loaded the bases with a pair of two-out walks.

Shane Spencer batted for Glavine and flied to center, failing to
take advantage of a fastball down the middle.

"I'll have bad dreams tonight," Spencer said.

Game notes
Mike Piazza made his 34th start at first base, one more
than he has made as a catcher. He made his first career start at
first on April 11. ... RHP Scott Erickson cleared waivers and
accepted an assignment to Triple-A Norfolk. He pitched 7 2/3
scoreless innings against Pawtucket, giving up five hits and three
walks. Erickson had been sidelined since April 4 because of a
strained hamstring. ... Reds INF Juan Castro made his second career
start and fourth appearance overall at first base. ... Graves got
save No. 30 in the Reds' 77th game. Eric Gagne and John Smoltz
reached the 30-save mark in 82 games, the previous benchmark.