National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, April 15th
(All times Eastern)
Philadelphia Phillies (6-6) at Cincinnati Reds (5-7), 7:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Philadelphia - Cliff Lee (2-0, 1.08)
Cincinnati - Bronson Arroyo (1-1, 5.25)
(Sports Network) - Veteran Bronson Arroyo takes the mound with a chance to
stop the bleeding for the Cincinnati Reds, who host the Philadelphia Phillies
to open a three-game series on Monday night at Great American Ball Park.
The Reds, winners of the National League's Central Division title in two of
the last three seasons, started the year with five wins in seven games but
have since dropped five in a row - all on the road - to fall to the middle of
the pack in the five-team division.
Arroyo is just 2-7 in 11 career meetings with the Phillies with a 6.55 earned
run average in 55 innings - but won the lone matchup in 2012 after allowing
three hits and two runs in eight innings in Philadelphia.
He's split a pair of starts thus far in 2013, defeating the Los Angeles Angels
of Anaheim, 5-4, on April 4, then dropping a 5-1 verdict in St. Louis five
days later on April 9.
In 12 overall innings, he's surrendered 13 hits and seven runs.
Arroyo is 44-39 in 116 career starts in Cincinnati.
He'll be opposed by Phillies lefty Cliff Lee, who appears to be regaining some
of the magic that helped him win 17 games as recently as 2011.
The 34-year-old Arkansas native tumbled to just 6-9 in 30 starts in a
disappointing 2012, but has allowed just two earned runs in 16 2/3 innings
over a pair of starts this spring while beating Atlanta and the New York Mets.
He's given up 10 hits and struck out 14 batters in that April stretch, while
posting a stingy 1.08 earned run average and allowing a batting average of
just .167 to opponents.
Lee is 6-2 in 11 lifetime starts against the Reds with a 3.91 ERA in 71 1/3
innings. He got a no-decision in one game against Cincinnati in 2012 and is
3-2 in career starts at Great American Ball Park.
On Sunday in Miami, pinch-hitter Laynce Nix hit a solo homer in the ninth
inning and Roy Halladay pitched eight solid frames as the Phillies beat the
Marlins, 2-1, in the rubber match of a three-game series.
Halladay (1-2), who has never dropped three straight starts to open a season,
gave up one run on five hits to nail down career win No. 200. The right-hander
saw his ERA drop from 14.73 to 7.63.
"I had been putting a lot of pressure on myself," Halladay said. "My plan the
whole week was to worry about the game and not worry about what was going on
Michael Young had an RBI for the Phillies, who improved to 6-6 on the young
In Pittsburgh, Starling Marte's eighth-inning home run helped cap the Pirates'
comeback and their first home three-game sweep of the Reds since 2010 with a
10-7 victory at PNC Park.
Jonathan Broxton (0-1) lasted just two-thirds of an inning in relief for the
Reds and allowed six earned runs on the way to his first loss of the season.
"Never seen big Broxton that wild," said Reds manager Dusty Baker. "And then
every homer was proceeded with a walk."
Brandon Phillips had three RBI for Cincinnati, while Joey Votto hit his first
home run since June of 2012 in the loss.
The Phillies won four of seven games between the teams in 2012 and have won
the season series each year since 2004, when it was tied at three games
apiece. The Reds last won in 2003 by taking five of nine games.
04/15 10:23:30 ET