Three more games in Philadelphia might not provide the best
opportunity for the Cincinnati Reds to end their longest losing
streak in almost two years.
The Reds look to snap a six-game skid and avoid a 10th
consecutive road loss to the Phillies on Tuesday night.
Jimmy Rollins hit a three-run homer and Placido Polanco added a
two-run shot in Philadelphia’s 10-3 win over Cincinnati on Monday.
The Phillies (29-18) have outscored the Reds 48-25 during their
nine-game home winning streak – including a pair of victories in
last season’s NL division series.
Cincinnati (25-33) is mired in its longest overall skid since
dropping eight straight July 28-Aug. 4, 2009.
“We just have to get back on track,” manager Dusty Baker
Reds pitching seems to bring out the best in the Phillies, who
had not scored more than three runs in a game while losing six of
their previous nine.
“That’s why we play for six months.” said Phillies second
baseman Chase Utley, who went 0 for 5 in his 2011 debut after
opening the season on the disabled list with a knee injury. “It’s
an up and down game. As long as you stay positive with the other
guys, you’ll get through that.”
Including postseason, Polanco is a .325 lifetime hitter against
Rollins is batting .342 with eight RBIs in his last nine
regular-season home games versus Cincinnati, but is 2 for 11
lifetime against probable Reds starter Johnny Cueto (2-1, 1.45
Making his third start of the season after a DL stint due to
biceps irritation, Cueto suffered his first loss Thursday, allowing
three runs in five innings of a 5-3 defeat to Pittsburgh.
The right-hander went 1-1 with a 1.35 ERA in three starts
against Philadelphia last season, including a 2-0 loss in Game 3 of
the NLDS, when he yielded a solo homer to Utley.
Cincinnati is averaging 2.5 runs during its six-game skid.
That’s exactly half its season mark of 5.0 runs per game.
Jay Bruce had three of the Reds’ five hits Monday, including a
three-run homer. The fourth-year outfielder has been one of the few
Reds hitting well recently, going 15 for 30 with four homers and
nine RBIs in his last eight games.
Reigning NL MVP Joey Votto is 1 for 14 in his last four games,
including the NLDS, versus Philadelphia.
The Reds look to get back on track when they face Philadelphia’s
Vance Worley (2-0, 1.13) for the first time.
Taking the place of the injured Joe Blanton (right elbow
inflammation), Worley was recalled from the minors Monday to make
his third major-league start of the season. The right-hander is 2-1
with a 1.23 ERA in four career starts, and has allowed one run and
six hits over 12 innings to win both of his starts this season.
Worley allowed that run along with four hits and struck out
seven in six innings of a 7-4 victory over Washington on May 4. He
made a pair of subsequent relief appearances before getting sent to
Triple-A Lehigh Valley on May 15.