While the Cincinnati Reds were busy splitting their four-game series with
the Arizona Diamondbacks this week, the St. Louis Cardinals were swept by
the Chicago Cubs during three games at Wrigley Field and were outscored
19-6. Despite the Cards beating the San Diego Padres 4-0 on Thursday along
with a Cincinnati loss, the Reds remain seven games ahead of them in the NL
Central standings (largest lead in the NL) with just fifteen games left in
their regular season. The Reds' magic number is now down to ten. The
On Friday, the Reds begin a three-game series against the Houston Astros. It
will be Cincinnati's final road trip of the 2010 regular season and will
consist of nine games (3 vs. Houston, 3 vs. Milwaukee, and 3 vs. San Diego).
The Reds have played above .500 baseball on the road (38-34) and have flat
out owned the Astros (7-2) and Brewers (7-1) this season. Overall, the Reds
are 42-28 against NL Central opponents. That, along with a stellar 45-30
record at Great American Ballpark, has propelled the Reds into their
first winning season since 2000.
“We’re in a good situation,”
Jonny Gomes said.
“We don’t have to scoreboard watch, we really don’t. We’ve done a good job
of keeping our eyes on the prize.”
FRIDAY: Johnny Cueto (12-5, 3.31) vs. Wandy Rodriguez (11-12,
3.62) at 8:05pm
During Cueto's last four starts, he's gone 1-1 and posted a 1.67 ERA. On
Sunday, Cueto pitched seven innings of three-hit ball with seven strikeouts,
but was handed a no-decision when Francisco Cordero allowed three runs in
the ninth inning and the Reds lost 3-1. Against Houston in his career, Cueto
is 1-4 with a 4.34 ERA in eight starts. Cueto's last start against the
Astros was on July 24. Cueto received the win as he hurled eight innings
allowing no runs on just four hits while striking out six. If Cueto makes it
past the third inning on Friday, he will have surpassed his innings pitched
totals from the two previous seasons (174IP in 2008, 171.1IP in 2009).
In Rodriguez's last ten starts he has lost just one game while winning four.
During eighteen career starts in which the Reds were the opponent, Rodriguez
is an even 7-7 with a 4.20 ERA. Wandy's last appearance against Cincinnati
on July 25 in Houston was a gem. He went seven innings, struck out seven
batters, allowed just one hit, and held the Reds scoreless. Rodriguez
received the win during Houston's 4-0 victory.
SATURDAY: Bronson Arroyo (15-10, 4.05) vs. Nelson Figueroa (5-2,
3.34) at 7:05pm
As Bronson Arroyo received the win during Cincinnati's 7-2 victory over
Arizona on Monday he became the first Red to win 15 or more games for three
straight seasons since Tom Browning accomplished the feat (1988-90). In
fact, only four players (Arroyo, Sabathia, Halladay, and Jon Lester) have
15 or more wins over the last three seasons. In eighteen career starts
against the Astros, Arroyo owns a 9-6 record. Arroyo has faced Houston just
once this season. Receiving the win on April 29, Arroyo hurled 6.2 innings
as he allowed two runs on six hits while striking out seven.
Nelson Figueroa's last start against the Reds was on August 30, 2002.
Wearing a Brewers uniform, Figueroa went six innings and allowed four earned
runs on nine hits and received a no-decision during a 9-4 Brewers victory.
After working out of the bullpen most of the season, Figueroa was converted
to a starter during mid-August and has posted a 2-1 record in six starts
since the mix-up. In eight seasons, Figueroa owns a lifetime 18-30 record as
SUNDAY: Travis Wood (5-3, 3.46) vs. Brett Myers (12-7, 2.85) at
Travis Wood will be making just his fifteenth career start on Sunday. Wood
has faced the Astros once this season (6IP, 9H, 4ER) and received a
no-decision. After going 0-1 through his first four starts, Wood has posted
a 5-2 record with a 3.46 ERA during his past ten. All five of Wood's
victories have came on the road.
Brett Myers has not faced the Reds this season. During his eight seasons in
Philadelphia (2002-09), Myers started against the Reds seven times and
posted a 2-2 record with a 3.72 ERA. Myers is undefeated (7-0) at home this
Stubbs streaking through the quad
deal Del Rosario to Astros
I don't care what people say