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03/20/10 12:58 AM ET

Vargas unravels in loss to Reds

Southpaw surrenders four homers after 3 1/3 scoreless

at Goodyear, Ariz.
Friday, March 19

Reds at the plate: Trying to win the regular center fielder's job, Drew Stubbs was 3-for-3 and hit an inside-the-park home run off the wall in right-center field in the fifth inning. Just before Stubbs' round tripper, pinch-hitter Chris Heisey sent a two-run homer over the left-field fence. In the sixth, Scott Rolen hit a two-run homer to left field and was followed two batters later by a Laynce Nix solo homer to right field.

Mariners at the plate: Milton Bradley provided the first run of the game with a RBI double off the left-field wall.

Reds on the mound: Opening Day starter Aaron Harang pitched five innings and allowed one earned run on six hits with no walks and six strikeouts. Matt Maloney followed with two innings and allowed one earned run on three hits with three strikeouts.

Mariners on the mound: Starter Doug Fister lasted only two-thirds of an inning with one hit. On his third batter, Fister was nailed in the right forearm by a Joey Votto line drive to the mound and was diagnosed with a bruise. Seeking the fifth starter's spot, Jason Vargas gave up six earned runs and seven hits, including four home runs, in five innings. Vargas' first 3 1/3 innings were scoreless.

Worth noting: Bradley was ejected by home plate umpire Jon Merry in the top of the fourth inning for disputing a called strike out. It was Bradley's second ejection in his last two games.

Cactus League records: Reds 7-7-1; Mariners 5-10-1

Up next: Young left-hander Travis Wood will make his first start of spring when the Reds visit the Giants in Scottsdale at 4:05 p.m. ET on Saturday on 700 WLW and MLB.com Gameday Audio. Wood remains a serious candidate for the fifth spot in the rotation. In his seven innings, he has a 1.29 ERA with five walks (including four in one game) and six strikeouts. Mike Leake, who has five scoreless innings this spring, is among those that will follow from the bullpen. Todd Wellemeyer is the Giants' scheduled starter.

Last year's American League Cy Young Award runner-up, Felix Hernandez, will make his second start of the spring at home Saturday in a 1:05 p.m. PT start against the D-backs. The game will be televised in Seattle on FSN and broadcast on ESPN 710-AM. Hernandez is making his first start since Sunday, when he pitched 2 2/3 shutout innings in Tucson against the Colorado Rockies. Hernandez gave up four hits, walked two batters and struck out three in that outing. He is scheduled to be followed by righties Shawn Kelley and Kanekoa Texeira. The D-backs are slated to start righty Dan Haren.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.