Reds Knock Off Dodgers, Clinch NL Central

Sep 22, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Reds right fielder Jay Bruce (32) is congratulated by third base coach Mark Berry (41) after hitting a home run during the fourth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE

The Cincinnati Reds clinched the National League Central behind strong pitching from Mat Latos and a returning Aroldis Chapman.

The Cincinnati Reds became the first team to clinch its division, defeating the Dodgers, 6-0, on Saturday. Mat Latos threw eight scoreless innings and Aroldis Chapman, who hadn't pitched since Sept. 10 with shoulder fatigue, closed the door on the Dodgers in the ninth.

Jay Bruce got the Reds on the board in the fourth with a solo homer to right field off of Dodgers starter Stephen Fife. Todd Frazier tacked on another run in the fifth when he singled home Brandon Phillips.

Phillips would hit a solo homer off Matt Guerrier in the seventh to give the Reds a three-run lead.

Jamey Wright came in for the eighth inning, and the Reds put the game out of reach. Frazier led off with a double, and Bruce followed with a walk. Chris Heisey laid down a bunt, which Wright picked up and threw away, allowing Frazier to score. After Dioner Navarro was walked intentionally, Zack Cozart singled to left to score two more runs.

The Reds are now 92-60, a half-game back of the Washington Nationals for the best record in the National League. The Dodgers have fallen to three games behind the St. Louis Cardinals for the last Wild Card spot.

Reds manager Dusty Baker is still in a Chicago hospital as he receives treatment for an irregular heartbeat.

For more on the Reds and Dodgers, visit Red Reporter and True Blue L.A..

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