PITTSBURGH -- Shutouts don't come easily, and the one the Cincinnati Reds managed Sunday came with a few tense moments for starter Brandon Finnegan.

"It was a Houdini act," manager Bryan Price said after Finnegan combined with three relievers on a seven-hitter and Tyler Holt drove in three runs as the Reds breezed to an 8-0 win over the sagging Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park.

Cincinnati gave Finnegan (9-10) a big cushion with five runs in the second, but over his five scoreless innings he twice loaded the bases before getting out of the jams.

"The lead was nice for sure," Finnegan said. "At the same time, no pitcher wants to give up runs, especially when you're kind of handing it to them like I was today. I was basically giving them every base they got. It was tough, but I was able to battle through it."

The Reds (60-82), far out of the playoff chase, won three of the four games in the weekend series against Pittsburgh, which is watching its shot at the playoffs slip away. It fell 6 1/2 games behind a National League wild-card spot.

The Pirates (69-72) have lost three in a row and 11 of their past 13, and they finished their homestand with a 2-8 mark.

That led to manager Clint Hurdle offering a soliloquy of sorts about not giving up with 21 games left.

"My vision is to get us playing better," Hurdle said. "That's my thought. I'm not going to walk out of here with anything other than knowing I have a job to do. Negative emotions, I don't carry them at all. Frustration isn't going to help me do what I need to do to get those men motivated and continue to play.

"Discouragement, I'm not going to go there. I don't go there. We needed to play better. We didn't. How do we play better? That's where my focus is."

Hurdle's counterpart, Price, picked up the 200th win of his career.

Price professed no satisfaction in playing the role of spoiler for the Pirates.

"If we're out there winning games, they can fight amongst themselves on who's going to get into the playoffs," he said. "There isn't a great deal of relevance to me in who goes in. ... Who makes it, let them figure it out. Let's just not be the ones that are standing on the field while they're celebrating a postseason clinch."

Finnegan was a little more forthcoming.

"The Reds and Pirates don't really get along very well," Finnegan said. "But it's nice beating any team, especially winning a series."

Finnegan (9-10) gave up five hits, striking out seven and walking five. He has allowed two or fewer runs in five straight starts. Jumbo Diaz pitched two innings, Ross Ohlendorf one and Wandy Peralta the ninth inning.

Pirates starter Ryan Vogelsong (3-5) got rocked in four innings, allowing six runs on seven hits, with three walks and no strikeouts. Fewer than half (34) of his 72 pitches were strikes.

Vogelsong has given up 16 earned runs in 12-plus innings over his past three starts and is 0-2 in that span.

It took Vogelsong just eight pitches to set the Reds down in order in the first.

Then came the second. Cincinnati batted around and scored five times.

Adam Duvall led off with a triple off of the wall in center. He scored on a single by Brandon Phillips, who advanced to third on center fielder Andrew McCutchen's error. Scott Schebler's grounder brought Phillips home to make it 2-0.

Vogelsong walked Ramon Cabrera and hit Ivan De Jesus Jr., and they advanced on Finnegan's bunt.

Holt followed with a two-run triple for a 4-0 lead, and he scored on Eugenio Suarez's single for a 5-0 lead on four hits.

Pittsburgh loaded the bases with no outs in its half of the second on a single and two walks, but Finnegan struck out Chris Stewart and Vogelsong, and got Jordy Mercer to pop out.

The Reds added another in the third on back-to-back doubles by Phillips and Schebler for a 6-0 lead.

In the bottom of the third, Gregory Polanco was called out on strikes with two on to end the Pirates inning. Polanco argued the call and was ejected.

In the fifth, with Pittsburgh rookie Tyler Glasnow making his first relief appearance, the Reds made it 7-0 when Cabrera singled home Phillips, who had doubled.

Glasnow gave up two runs on five hits over three innings in what he said was his first time pitching out of the bullpen since high school, with the exception of spring training.

"I felt pretty good," Glasnow said. "I just went out, tried to make some pitches and it ended up working pretty well. It was good."

The Pirates loaded the bases with one out in the fifth, but Finnegan struck out David Freese and Adam Frazier.

"We got him the big lead, and he scuffled to keep guys off base and command his stuff," Price said. "At the same time, he pitched himself out of constant trouble. Certainly not a recipe for long-term success.

"However, he could have broke, especially in a situation like today with a shortened bullpen. It would have been disastrous for us to have to go to Diaz or Wandy or Ohlendorf in the second or third, and that could have happened very easily had he not gotten his act together."

Cincinnati loaded the bases with no outs in the eighth, chasing Glasnow. Jared Hughes relieved Glasnow and gave up an RBI single to Holt to make it 8-0.

NOTES: Pirates 2B Josh Harrison, who left Saturday's game because of right groin discomfort, was not in the lineup. SS Jordy Mercer replaced him as the leadoff hitter. General manager Neal Huntington said Harrison could miss "significant" time. ... Pittsburgh LF Starling Marte (back spasms) was out of the lineup for the sixth game in a row. ... Cincinnati CF Billy Hamilton (oblique) missed his seventh straight game. His original time frame had him coming back this weekend. ... The Reds gave CF Jose Peraza and SS Zack Cozart the day off from the starting lineup. ... With Pittsburgh managing some members of the rotation's workloads in case it makes the playoffs, the scheduled starters the next five days are RHP Gerrit Cole, RHP Ivan Nova, LHP Steven Brault, RHP Chad Kuhl and RHP Ryan Vogelsong.