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Game 23, take two: Reds vs. Cubs (7:10 EDT). Arroyo vs. Samardzija.

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Chicago Cubs
@ Cincinnati Reds

Tuesday, May 2, 2012, 7:10 PM EDT
Great American Ball Park

Jeff Samardzija vs Bronson Arroyo

Coverage

TV: FSO-HD, WGN-HD; RADIO: WLW, WGN; WEB: MLB.tv, Gameday Audio, Gameday

Weather

Chance of thunderstorms. Gametime temperature around 70.

Complete Coverage >


By their Pythagorean record, the Reds weren't unlucky in April. Run differential says they should be 11-11, just like they are in real life. But they almost certainly had an underachieving month at the plate.

The Reds had a +20 differential at the end of April 2011. This season, they were outscored 87-90. Scoring may be down in the league, but winning baseball is going to have to come by way of the offense. If the pitching is due to decline a little, the question will be how much the bats can heat up to bring about a net improvement that will keep the team regularly winning series as it did at the end of April. A gut-level analysis says the pitching will only fluctuate slightly if Arroyo and Bailey trade places with Leake and Latos.

We're all a day wiser, but nothing has fundamentally changed since Scrabbles looked over this match-up yesterday. I would only add that teams continue to stack up the lefties against Arroyo. The Cubs have only two righthanded position players in the lineup today.

... Neither Arroyo nor Samardzija pitched in the last series, but Arroyo has been throwing rocks so far this season. He's thrown 26.2 innings and has a shimmering 15/2 K/BB ratio. Most importantly though, he's only given up two wangers. That's a tremendously good sign, as the Reds are going to need Arroyo to be at least serviceablerroyo for the duration of his contract. Keep on keepin' on, BroYo.

Samardzija has started his career in the starting rotation fairly well, notching more than a strikeout per inning. He was roughed up on the 19th by the Marlins, but outside that he's been a positive addition to the Cubs' rotation. Here's hoping that our Redlegs can stick 'im what fer this evenin'.

Bronson Arroyo
Stats Jeff Szizmfjf
2.70 (142)
ERA (ERA+) 4.13 (91)
1.088 WHIP 1.417
7.50 K/BB 3.13
3.13 FIP 2.40
4.11 xFIP 2.94
4.16 SIERA 3.21
26.2 IP 24.0

Lineups

Reds cubs
Zack Cozart SS
David DeJesus RF
Drew Stubbs CF
Tony Campana CF
Joey Votto 1B
Starlin Castro SS
Brandon Phillips 2B Bryan LaHair 1B
Jay Bruce RF
Alfonso Soriano LF
Scott Rolen 3B
Ian Stewart 3B
Chris Heisey LF Blake DeWitt 2B
Ryan Hanigan C Geovany Soto C
Bronson Arroyo RHP Jeff Smarchzoid RHP

The bullpen is too well rested?

Bullpen Log

Reliever 4/26 4/27 4/28 4/29 4/30, 5/1 6 day totals
Sean Marshall 1.0, 22p 1.0, 10 - 2.0 IP, 32 pitches
Aroldis Chapman 1.0, 31p - 1.0 IP, 31 pitches
Logan Ondrusek 1.2, 24p 1.0, 11p 1.0, 13 - 3.2 IP, 48 pitches
Jose Arredondo 1.0, 13p 0.2, 13 - 1.2 IP, 26 pitches
Sam LeCure 1.0, 10p - 1.0 IP, 10 pitches
J.J. Hoover 2.0, 33p - 2.0 IP, 33 pitches
Alfredo Simon 1.1, 36p - 1.1 IP, 36 pitches