|Reds bring four-game win streak into Milwaukee|
The Cincinnati Reds have put together their second four-game winning streak this season and are playing some of their best baseball as they hit the road to face the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday.
Cincinnati swept the American League West-leading Houston Astros the past three days at Great American Ball Park in Ohio, instilling confidence in manager David Bell's team as it prepares to face the Brewers in a four-game set.
Infielder Kyle Farmer said the intensity of the series created a playoff-like atmosphere that was good for the Reds.
"That's the mentality we should have every day," Farmer told reporters. "That's what David is really telling us, and it's clicking for us. You have to play your best, and that's what we're doing right now, which is really fun."
The Reds, who have won four straight for the first time since April 9-13, will task right-hander Tanner Roark (4-6, 3.63 ERA) with making it a season-high five.
Roark made his first start of the 2019 season against Milwaukee on April 1 in Cincinnati, and he didn't factor in the decision after working 4 1/3 innings and allowing six hits and three runs. The Brewers emerged with a 4-3 win.
Roark has made nine appearances (eight starts) in his career against Milwaukee and is 4-2 with a 2.96 ERA. However, he is in the midst of a rough stretch, as he is 0-3 with a 5.00 ERA in his past three outings.
The Reds made a move on Wednesday as they brought back shortstop Jose Iglesias from the paternity list and optioned infielder/outfielder Josh VanMeter to Triple-A Louisville. In two stints with the club this season, VanMeter hit .220 in 28 games.
Milwaukee has lost three straight and four of five, but the Brewers have beaten the Reds in four of five meetings this year. The teams split a two-game series last month at Miller Park.
Ryan Braun, Yasmani Grandal and Christian Yelich hit home runs in San Diego on Wednesday, but the Padres rallied to beat the Brewers 8-7 to sweep the three-game series.
Yelich's 447-foot blast to right -- his major-league-leading 27th homer -- was his longest this season. However, Milwaukee and manager Craig Counsell are concerned about another slugger -- Mike Moustakas.
The infielder was struck on the left hand Tuesday by a fastball from San Diego's Logan Allen. Moustakas didn't start Wednesday, but he came off the bench to pinch-hit and then remained in the game on defense.
"It's good news," Counsell said on Wednesday of Moustakas, who has 21 homers. "He's feeling good today -- normal soreness from getting hit in the finger. I don't know for sure on Thursday, but this weekend he'll be in the lineup."
It was the second time this season that Moustakas sustained a hand injury. He was hit on the hand on a grounder by the Dodgers' Rocky Gale on April 20. Moustakas was out four games due to a broken tip of his right ring finger but avoided the injured list.
Milwaukee, which went 2-6 on its just-concluded eight-game road swing, will turn to right-hander Jimmy Nelson (0-1, 10.29 ERA) for his third start of the season on Thursday. He hasn't recorded an out past the fourth inning in either of his outings since recovering from shoulder surgery.
Nelson, 30, has made 14 career appearances (12 starts) against the Reds and is 5-4 with a 5.32 ERA.
--Field Level Media