Cincinnati Reds' Zack Cozart, right, slides safely into second base for a double beating the tag from Chicago Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney, left, in the third inning of the first baseball game of a doubleheader, Saturday, Aug. 18, 2012, in Cincinnati. The Reds won 5-3. (AP Photo/David Kohl)
Johnny Cueto remained masterful under the sun and Todd Frazier hit the go-ahead drive for the second straight game, leading the Cincinnati Reds over the Chicago Cubs 5-3 Saturday in the opener of a day-night doubleheader.
Xavier Paul and Miguel Cairo added their first home runs of the season as the Reds roughed up another Chicago starting pitcher for three home runs. They hit three off Travis Wood in a 7-3 win on Friday night and three more off Jeff Samardzija.
Cueto improved to 11-0 in 13 day-game starts this season. He settled down after allowing Alfonso Soriano's two-run homer in the first.
Cueto (16-6) gave up three hits and struck out eight in eight innings, earning a standing ovation when he walked off the mound for the last time. He also hit David DeJesus, the first batter of the game.
Cueto, who didn't allow a runner past first base after the first inning and retired 19 of the last 20 batters he faced, is the first Cincinnati pitcher since Danny Jackson in 1988 to win 16 of his first 25 starts. Cueto has won seven of his last eight appearances to move into a tie with Tampa Bay's David Price for the major league lead in wins.
Aroldis Chapman allowed two hits, a walk and a run — his first in 24 appearances — but held on for his 29th save.
The first-place Reds (73-47) began the day with a six-game lead over Pittsburgh and an eight-game advantage over St. Louis in the NL Central.
Soriano drove a 3-2 pitch 433 feet into the second deck in left field with two outs in the first inning for his 22nd homer. The two RBIs gave Soriano 1,000 for his career.
The Reds responded in the second. Frazier led off with a single up the middle and Paul followed with a 381-foot line drive into the right-field seats on a 2-0 pitch.
Frazier led off the fourth with a drive to the first row of the second deck in left for his 17th homer and third in four games. He also had a two-run shot Friday night that gave the Reds a 4-3 lead.
Cairo added a one-out shot to left on a 1-2 pitch for his first homer since Sept. 21 against Houston, making it 4-2.
Samardzija (8-11) gave up four runs and six hits in five innings. He struck out five, walked none, hit a batter and threw a wild pitch.
The right-hander is 1-3 with a 4.07 ERA in four starts this month.
Jay Bruce led off the eighth with a triple and scored on Frazier's sacrifice fly.