Reds end Philly funk

BY foxsports • May 25, 2011


LOSING STREAKS HALTED: Citizens Bank Park has been the Reds' House of Horrors the last three years until Tuesday, when Cincinnati earned a 6-3 win at Philadelphia.

The Reds had lost nine straight in Philly, including the two losses in the National League Division Series. One of losses was a no-hitter by Roy Halladay.

The Reds had also lost six in a row overall.

"It was big to come back and win this game," said closer Francisco Cordero, who finished for his 299th save. "It gives us new life. It ends a losing streak. Now we can start a winning streak."

Beating the Phillies was the topper.

"It's great, especially against a team like Philadelphia," Cincinnati right fielder Jay Bruce said. "They're never an easy team to beat. We pulled it out. I guess there's some significance -- not because they swept us in the playoffs -- but because they're a really good team."

If the Reds are to repeat as NL Central champs, they know a return to Philadelphia is likely in October.

"You want to win in the playoffs, you have win here," Reds manager Dusty Baker said.


NOTES, QUOTES

--RHP Bronson Arroyo flew back to Cincinnati on Tuesday to get his back evaluated by the team's medical director, Dr. Tim Kremchek. "Kremchek did an (evaluation) and an MRI," trainer Paul Lessard said. "There's really not a whole lot in there. We'll treat it as a muscle strain." Lessard does not expect Arroyo to miss a start. Arroyo allowed nine runs in 2 2/3 innings in a 10-3 loss at Philadelphia on Monday.

--INF/OF Todd Frazier was optioned back to Class AAA Louisville after only one day with the Reds. Frazier struck out in a pinch-hit at-bat. The Reds recalled RHP Carlos Fisher. The club's bullpen threw 10 2/3 innings Monday and Tuesday. "There's some needs," Frazier said. "They've got to do what they've got to do. I got my feet wet. Hopefully, next time I get the call I'll be here longer."

--RHP Carlos Fisher was recalled from Class AAA Louisville, where he was 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA in 12 appearances. He converted six of seven saves. He threw 4 2/3 scoreless innings over three outings in an earlier stint with the Reds this season.

--RHP Mike Leake has not officially been named the starter for Friday's game in Atlanta, but manager Dusty Baker said Leake "probably" would get the assignment. Leake has allowed eight runs over 7 1/3 innings in two appearances for Class AAA Louisville since being optioned there.

--RF Jay Bruce is hitting .563 with four home runs and nine RBI over his last six games. On Tuesday, his three-run double in the ninth inning was the game-winner.

BY THE NUMBERS: 1 -- Bunt hits for CF Drew Stubbs this year after he started the Reds' ninth-inning rally with one Tuesday.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "You got to keep fighting and fighting and fighting. Tonight, we can get some sleep. I don't think anybody's slept over these last six games. These guys take it hard. We've been close to winning some of these games. We finally did tonight with a big hit." -- Manager Dusty Baker, after the Reds pulled out a 6-3 win at Philadelphia to end a six-game losing streak.

PHILLIES BULLPEN TAKING SHAPE: Slowly but surely, the bullpen the Phillies hoped to have entering the final week of spring training is beginning to take shape.

Longtime closer Brad Lidge, sidelined with a shoulder injury since the final week of March, threw his first bullpen session since taking his rehab program to Clearwater, Fla. Fellow veteran Jose Contreras, shut down with an elbow injury a month ago, threw two innings in a minor league rehab game for Triple-A Lehigh Valley and is set to rejoin the Phillies before the weekend.

In the absence of Lidge (the team's closer the last three seasons) and Contreras (the team's closer the first three weeks of this season), Ryan Madson has matured into the new, trusted right arm in the ninth inning. Madson had a 13-game shutout string snapped Tuesday, when he gave up a three-run double in the ninth inning of the Phillies' 6-3 loss to the Reds.

But Madson remains 9-for-9 in save opportunities and showed a veteran's resolve following the game, perhaps the final hurdle in the maturation of a big-league closer.

"I'm already past it," Madson said. "If it would have been five years ago I would have been hiding somewhere. I'm ready to start another roll."

Before the 30-year-old, soon-to-be free agent Madson entered, three of the Phillies' younger and more inexperienced relievers also continued their major league development. David Herndon, Michael Stutes and Antonio Bastardo allowed one hit in three shutout innings to keep the game within striking distance for the Phillies offense.

During the first two months of the season when the Phils bullpen has dealt with injuries -- Lidge, Contreras and left-hander J.C. Romero, too -- the younger bullpen arms have been asked to pitch big innings and have responded, too.

"The more experience they get, the better we think they'll be," manager Charlie Manuel said.

PHILLIES NOTES

--RHP Ryan Madson's 13-inning scoreless streak was snapped in the ninth inning of the Phillies' 6-3 loss to the Reds. Madson gave up a three-run double to Jay Bruce. Before Tuesday, Madson hadn't given up a run since April 18. He hadn't allowed more than one run in a game since Sept. 26, 2010. He also was charged with his first loss since Aug. 23 of last year.

--RHP Vance Worley struggled in his third start of the season. The 23-year-old Worley was charged with three runs in five innings. He walked four batters in five innings, including three in the Reds' two-run fifth inning. "I wasn't able to locate really anything today," Worley said. Worley's start was his first since May 4. All have come in place of Joe Blanton, who has made two trips to the disabled list with an elbow injury.

--LF Raul Ibanez enjoys the comforts of Citizens Bank Park. Ibanez went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored in the Phillies 6-3 loss to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday. Ibanez is batting .435 (20-for-46) with five doubles, four home runs and 10 RBI in his last 13 home games.

--2B Chase Utley collected his first hit of the 2011 season in the Phillies 6-3 loss to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday. With a runner on second and one out in the third inning, Utley ripped a single to center. Jimmy Rollins was gunned down by Cincinnati center fielder Drew Stubbs on the play, ending the inning. Utley, who missed the season's first 46 games with right knee tendinitis, is 1-for-9 in his first two games back in the Phillies lineup.


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