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View Full Version : St. Louis take on Monday's Game



redsmetz
05-02-2006, 07:00 AM
Fromt his morning's St. Louis Post Dispatch comes this story and definitely some respect:



Cards slip to second
By Joe Strauss
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
05/01/2006

CINCINNATI

Cardinals lefthander Mark Mulder needed one more win Monday to reach No. 100 for his career. Betrayed by his bullpen in his previous start, Mulder was betrayed by location this time.

Location mistake No. 1: Mulder's pitches were too high too often.

Location mistake No. 2: Mulder was caught pitching on the same field as Bronson Arroyo.

Rising up against a team that has consistently pummeled them in recent years, the Cincinnati Reds leveraged a four-run sixth inning and another dazzling effort by their spring training find, Arroyo (5-0), to take down the Cardinals 6-1 before a not-so-great crowd of 20,900 at Great American Ball Park.

In a clash of April titans, Arroyo held the Cardinals to four hits and became the second Reds pitcher in three years to win his first five decisions.

After entering the game riding a 15-inning scoreless streak, he made his only mistake on a bases-empty, second-inning home run by right fielder Juan Encarnacion. The upper-deck blast was Encarnacion's second in as many games and deprived Arroyo of his first career shutout. Arroyo instead settled for his second career complete game. Arroyo's 109-pitch outing allowed the Reds (18-8) to break a first-place tie with the Cardinals (17-9), who lost for only the third time in 12 games.

Just 12-27 the past three seasons against the Cardinals, the Reds scored first on first baseman Rich Aurilia's two-out home run in the first inning. They struck again with two outs in the fifth inning when shortstop Felipe Lopez snapped an 0-for-17 skid with an RBI single. And they struck with four consecutive hits to chase Mulder before he could get an out in the sixth.

"It was a pitching duel for the first five (innings), then he makes some mistakes in the one inning, they capitalize, and Arroyo didn't make any mistakes," manager Tony La Russa said. "Overall, they just played better."

Said Cardinals left fielder John Rodriguez, who doubled and singled for half the hits against Arroyo, "He doesn't have overpowering stuff, but he's smart. He knows where his pitches are going. He just had a really good game today."

The Reds lost 89 games and finished 27 games behind the Cardinals last season. However, a pitching staff that previously resembled a toxic waste dump found an ace in the wild-haired Arroyo when the Reds acquired him from the Boston Red Sox for outfielder Wily Mo Pena. The Reds have spent eight days in first place so far, the Cardinals three.

Arroyo, who lowered his ERA to 2.06, has amassed more strikeouts (34) than hits allowed (29). The other four Reds starters have a combined 5.61 ERA.

"Any pitcher can make a mistake, and we're good enough to capitalize," La Russa said. "But (Arroyo) did enough good things. He got a lot of outs in a lot of different parts of the zone. That's good pitching. If we pitch good, I always think there's a chance we're going to break through any particular inning."

Said reliever Josh Hancock, abruptly released by the Reds this spring before signing with the Cardinals, "Their offense is good. Their offense was good last year. It was good the year before. They're just clicking on all cylinders right now. They're first in the division after the first month. That says something. You put that kind of offense in this kind of park and special things will happen."

It got real special for the Reds in Monday's sixth inning.

Left fielder Adam Dunn led off with an opposite-field double on a too-high cutter. Right fielder Austin Kearns singled to make it a 3-1 game. Third baseman Edwin Encarnacion produced the inning's third straight hit before second baseman Brandon Phillips delivered a two-strike single to score Kearns for a three-run lead.

Mulder's night was done. The Reds beat him for the third time in seven starts with the Cardinals. They've raked him for 65 hits in 49 1/3 innings and a 5.97 ERA with the Redbirds and are the only NL team to have beaten him three times since his trade from the Oakland A's.

"I don't know what it is about this team. They've got a pretty good approach, especially against me," said Mulder. "Even in the first couple innings, I'm throwing good sinkers down and away, cutters down and in, and they're hitting one-hoppers right at guys. A lot of the pitches I was throwing, especially late, were up."

Mulder (2-1) allowed the Reds 11 hits in an April start last season, 12 in a four-inning June appearance and walked seven in a meaningless September outing. He also shut them out for seven innings of a win in May.

"When he makes pitches, he can pitch against anybody," La Russa said. "When he doesn't, he's vulnerable."

The Reds led the league in runs last season but were crushed by incompetent pitching. They entered Monday ranked 12th in the league in ERA, not great but good enough to back an offense responsible for a plus-21 run differential.

"To me, it seems like the same lineup as last year. But they're obviously pitching a lot better," Mulder noted. "When you put together some pitching and all of a sudden get a little more confidence, I think it says a lot for a team."

The Reds attach much of that to Arroyo, a member of Boston's '04 championship team.

"He's meant a lot to us," Lopez said. "He's got the personality of being on a winning team. He has a lot of experience in the postseason, and we're feeding off of that."

MattyHo4Life
05-02-2006, 08:00 AM
"It was a pitching duel for the first five (innings), then he makes some mistakes in the one inning, they capitalize, and Arroyo didn't make any mistakes," manager Tony La Russa said. "Overall, they just played better."


Said Cardinals left fielder John Rodriguez, who doubled and singled for half the hits against Arroyo, "He doesn't have overpowering stuff, but he's smart. He knows where his pitches are going. He just had a really good game today."


"I don't know what it is about this team. They've got a pretty good approach, especially against me," said Mulder. "Even in the first couple innings, I'm throwing good sinkers down and away, cutters down and in, and they're hitting one-hoppers right at guys. A lot of the pitches I was throwing, especially late, were up."

He wasn't sick, and he didn't make excuses.


"To me, it seems like the same lineup as last year. But they're obviously pitching a lot better," Mulder noted. "When you put together some pitching and all of a sudden get a little more confidence, I think it says a lot for a team."


"Any pitcher can make a mistake, and we're good enough to capitalize," La Russa said. "But (Arroyo) did enough good things. He got a lot of outs in a lot of different parts of the zone. That's good pitching. If we pitch good, I always think there's a chance we're going to break through any particular inning."


Said reliever Josh Hancock, abruptly released by the Reds this spring before signing with the Cardinals, "Their offense is good. Their offense was good last year. It was good the year before. They're just clicking on all cylinders right now. They're first in the division after the first month. That says something. You put that kind of offense in this kind of park and special things will happen."

This article was written for the hometown crowd just like the one about the Reds Astros game. Do you see a difference in the attitude?

redsmetz
05-02-2006, 08:12 AM
I don't disagree, but I do believe the Astros were giving the Reds some credit, albeit grudgingly. I do think the Cardinals were clearly tipping their hat to Bronson Arroyo and a Reds team different from years past.

Heath
05-02-2006, 10:12 AM
Wow - a plus 21 run diff.

Can you imagine if this team had another Harang...or Arroyo?

Dumb question - not to hijack thread - Would the Reds be interested in finding another starting pitcher by Memorial Day?

smith288
05-02-2006, 10:24 AM
Down to 965 pace for runs for the year. Not bad obviously, but I would love to see them stay above 1000.

Opp on pace to score 822

Heath
05-02-2006, 10:44 AM
Down to 965 pace for runs for the year. Not bad obviously, but I would love to see them stay above 1000.

Opp on pace to score 822

That has potential.

redsmetz
05-02-2006, 10:52 AM
Can you imagine if this team had another Harang...or Arroyo?

Dumb question - not to hijack thread - Would the Reds be interested in finding another starting pitcher by Memorial Day?

I don't think it hijacks the thread at all. I think the Cards (and the Astros) had their eyes opened this weekend and yesterday. I think we're one better pitcher away from being a full blown contender and I hope Krivskey does something in the short run.

registerthis
05-02-2006, 10:59 AM
Yep, especially considering that we still have some expendable talent on the 25 man. If krivsky has the opportunity to improve this team now, without giving away the farm, he should do it. I'm a little tired of the wait-till-next-year game being played in mid-May.

max venable
05-02-2006, 10:59 AM
I don't think it hijacks the thread at all. I think the Cards (and the Astros) had their eyes opened this weekend and yesterday. I think we're one better pitcher away from being a full blown contender and I hope Krivskey does something in the short run.
You gotta believe Kriv is working overtime trying to come up with something pitching-wise. He's gotta realize what we're all saying...that the Reds are one or two pitchers away from being a serious contender. Plus, we know that Cast wants to win...desperately. If we can stay near the top of the division for another month or so, I think they'll make a big push to solidify the roster...especially the rotation. I don't think we could expected that during the Lindner administration.

Astrobuddy
05-02-2006, 11:07 AM
Matty, there was NO difference in attitude. It was written better, but the Houston Chronicle has never had great writters anyway. Kinda of like the difference between me and someone who writes better. We can say the exact same things, but people will get mad at me because of how I write it.

What did Larussa say? "He just had a good game" Like it came out of nowhere and it took a good game from Arroyo to shut down the mighty Cards lineup. Then he says... " overall they just played better " .. instead of the truth.." They kicked the crap out of us tonite".


The difference was, there werent alot of quotes from other players. So the chance wasnt there for a out of context quote.

MattyHo4Life
05-02-2006, 11:26 AM
The difference was, there werent alot of quotes from other players. So the chance wasnt there for a out of context quote.

How many quotes can they fit into an article? They had quotes from LaRussa, Mulder, Rodriguez, Hancock, and a Reds player or two.

Astrobuddy
05-02-2006, 11:33 AM
I missed the Hancock quote, but thanks.. what did he say..

" You put that kind of offense is THIS KIND OF PARK"... Kinda back handed there wasnt it ? It was the park, not the team.

Matty, my real point is. If you are looking for things to dislike you can pick an article apart and spin it how you want.


I didnt see anymore credit to the Reds flowing from TLR and the Cards than I saw with the Astros article.

foxfire123
05-02-2006, 05:49 PM
Hey, live in St. Louis. You'll see that this is NICE for them. Those writers are usually raging jacka&&es to any team other than the Cardinals.

Foxfire123

Jr's Boy
05-02-2006, 07:06 PM
I don't think it hijacks the thread at all. I think the Cards (and the Astros) had their eyes opened this weekend and yesterday. I think we're one better pitcher away from being a full blown contender and I hope Krivskey does something in the short run.
Castellini said IIRC early on that if we're in the hunt we'll get another pitcher,that is for the stretch run.

Sea Ray
05-02-2006, 07:52 PM
Wow - a plus 21 run diff.

Can you imagine if this team had another Harang...or Arroyo?

Dumb question - not to hijack thread - Would the Reds be interested in finding another starting pitcher by Memorial Day?

I think the key here is Milton. If Milton comes back and pitches to his career norms then we're OK w/o another starter