It's kind of boring when we see the exact same pitching match ups this close together. I like variety, especially when it means the Reds are mixing in some wins with their losses.
Bronson Arroyo has pitched 50.1 innings over his last 7 starts for a 2.49 ERA, but the Reds are just 3-4 in those starts. The key for him has been keeping the ball in the park. After allowing 21 HR in his previous 17 starts, he's allowed just 4 over his last 7 starts. Combine that with a respectable 2.14 BB/9 and you have the makings of an attractive pitcher for a potential playoff run (hurry while supplies last!).
The last time the Reds faced Barry Zito, he shut them down, allowing just 2 runs in 6 innings to get the win in the Giants 4-2 victory on August 8th. Brandon Phillips and Wladimir Balentien both doubled off of the lefty, so it's good to see them both in the lineup tonight.
The big news for this game is that Drew Stubbs will be starting in center field and leading off. All I want from him is good enough play for the Reds to consider dumping Willy Taveras. He doesn't have to be a world beater, just good enough. But I'd love it if he was a world-beater.
Unfortunately, even with the good news, the Reds are still on a 4-game losing streak. That means the baby must go back under the basket. Poor kid, you don't deserve this...