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  Thursday, Jun. 1 7:35pm ET
Vazquez gets enough support to beat Reds

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Rondell White and Charlie O'Brien hit two-run homers Thursday night as the Montreal Expos concluded an injury-marred trip with a 9-7 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.

Vladimir Guerrero
Vladimir Guerrero slides home in front of Reds catcher Eddie Taubensee to give the Expos a 4-1 lead in the third inning.

Montreal won the first game and the last two on a 3-6 trip that put a deep gash in its pitching plans. The Expos lost pitchers Matt Blank, Mike Thurman and Hideki Irabu and catcher Chris Widger to injuries during the three-city trek.

After scoring only 13 runs during the first seven games on the trip, the Expos broke out with 10 runs and 16 hits -- matching their season high -- Wednesday night.

They went one better in the finale, piling up 17 hits off five Cincinnati pitchers.

Javier Vazquez (6-1) needed every one of those hits to beat a team that's troubled him throughout his career. Vazquez had leads of 8-2 and 9-3, but ended up leaving in the seventh when Dante Bichette's two-run homer cut it to 9-7.

The Expos' depleted bullpen induced two double plays in the last three innings to hold on. Steve Kline pitched the last two innings for his second save in three chances.

Montreal wasted a chance to open it up again when Danny Graves walked the bases loaded in the eighth but Orlando Cabrera grounded out. It was the only inning in which Montreal failed to get a hit.

White and O'Brien homered off Ron Villone (6-2), who gave up 11 hits and eight runs -- both career highs -- in four-plus innings. The drubbing ended the best stretch of the left-hander's career -- four wins without a loss since April 23, a span of six starts.

Vazquez came into the game with a 2.79 ERA that was fourth-best in the NL, but once again had big problems against the Reds. The right-hander was 0-2 in his three previous starts against Cincinnati, rocked for 16 runs in 15 innings.

Cincinnati gave him problems again with a lineup missing Ken Griffey Jr., who got the day off against his wishes because of an 0-for-14 slump.

Michael Tucker started in center and had three hits, including an RBI single in the seventh. Bichette's homer cut it to 9-7 and ended a rough night for Vazquez, who gave up 12 hits and seven earned runs that raised his ERA to 3.41.

Bichette had three hits off Vazquez, leaving him 6-for-10 career against him with two homers.

Game notes
It was 89 degrees at the first pitch. ... Three Expos have at least 40 RBI -- Vladimir Guerrero (45), White (41) and Jose Vidro (40). The Expos have never had two players get 100 RBI in the same season. ... O'Brien was called up May 25 after Widger got hurt. His homer was his first hit in eight at-bats. ... White is 2-for-11 career off Villone. Both hits were homers. ... A day after manager Jack McKeon said there was no reason to rest Griffey, he changed his mind. Griffey is hitting .212. ... Tucker was called out in the third when he stepped out, got back in the box and then stepped out again as Vazquez threw. Home plate umpire Marty Foster called strike three. ... Mark Wohlers pitched one perfect inning for Class A Dayton in his second rehab appearance, retiring all three West Michigan batters he faced. He threw seven strikes in nine pitches.

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Montreal Clubhouse

Cincinnati Clubhouse

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