SAN FRANCISCO - Bronson Arroyo pitched the Reds back to Ohio on quite a playoff roll.
Arroyo retired his first 14 batters and delivered a gem a day after 19-game winner Johnny Cueto went down with a back injury, and Cincinnati beat the San Francisco Giants 9-0 on Sunday night to head home with a 2-0 NL division series lead.
A pair of Ryans provided the big hits. Ryan Ludwick connected leading off the second inning for his first career playoff homer and Ryan Hanigan hit a two-run single in the fourth and a later RBI single. Jay Bruce added a two-run double and Joey Votto had three hits in his first multihit postseason game.
"Coming on the road, you think about getting one as a success and victory," Bruce said. "To be able come here and get two is very important."
Former San Francisco skipper Dusty Baker came into his old stomping grounds and left with two commanding victories 10 years after managing the Giants within six outs of a World Series title.
The Giants were handed their worst playoff shutout in franchise history.
Game 3 in the best-of-five series is Tuesday at Great American Ball Park. Homer Bailey (13-10), who pitched a no-hitter Sept. 28 at Pittsburgh, takes the mound as the Reds try to close out the series against Giants right-hander Ryan Vogelsong (14-9).
"You're not comfortable at all until it's over," Baker said. "We've been there before. It's hard to take the last breath out of anything."
The Reds will try for their first postseason sweep since beating the Dodgers in the first round in 1995.
The shaggy-haired Arroyo, the right-hander with that high leg kick slightly resembling the familiar motion of Giants Hall of Famer Juan Marichal, went untouched before Brandon Belt's two-out single to right-center with two out in the fifth.
Baker said he picked Arroyo for Game 2 here in part because the righty is susceptible to giving up home runs after he allowed 26 this year. And AT&T Park is "one of the most forgiving ballparks in baseball."
"A no-hitter in this type of environment is nearly impossible," Arroyo said. "A win for the ballclub is the pinnacle, nirvana."