The Philadelphia Phillies’ Roy Halladay tries to get his Cy Young campaign back on track when he pitches at the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night.
The broadcast will begin at Great American Ball Park at 7:10 p.m. (ET). Bronson Arroyo will be on the mound for Cincinnati. The Monday night opener on ESPN was still pending with Cole Hamels and the Phils a 145 odds favorite over Homer Bailey and Cincy.
Philadelphia (83-46) is trying to keep focused with a playoff spot all but wrapped up. Hurricane Irene wiped out its Saturday and Sunday home games against Florida.
Halladay (15-5, 2.56 ERA) is still one of the Cy Young favorites, but hasn’t pitched in over a week and the team has lost his last two starts after going 14-1 in the previous 15.
His last start August 21 was at Washington. Halladay lasted just five innings due to a rain delay, his second shortest outing of the season. He left with a 3-2 lead, but saw the bullpen eventually blow it (5-4) in 10 innings.
The 34-year-old right-hander lost his previous start at home against Arizona, throwing a complete game, but losing 3-2. Halladay has been overtaken by Ian Kennedy (17) and Clayton Kershaw (16) for wins in the NL and Kershaw now has a lower ERA (2.51).
Halladay is 7-3 with a 2.86 ERA overall on the road this year, with the ‘over’ 7-1 in the last eight. He has faced Cincinnati just once this season, surrendering three earned runs (11 hits) over seven innings in a 5-4 May home win. He lost his only start at Great American Ball Park last year (4-3).
Cincinnati (67-66) has struggled all season and is double-digit games back in both the NL Central and wild-card. The team is still fighting with a 4-game winning streak, sweeping Washington three over the weekend, and is 12-5 in its last 17 overall.
Arroyo (8-10, 5.02 ERA) has had a season to forget for the most part, but has been much better in August (2.91 ERA) after an awful July (7.42 ERA). Cincinnati is 3-1 in Arroyo’s last four starts. That includes a gem at Florida last Wednesday, eight shutout innings in a 3-2 victory. It was his first winning decision since June 25.
The 34-year-old right-hander has a 5.13 ERA at home and has seen the Reds win just five of his 14 starts there. They did get a victory (5-3) against San Diego in the last one August 12.
Arroyo’s one start against Philly this season was a debacle, nine earned runs over 2 2/3 innings back in May on the road. Cincinnati is 0-4 in his last four starts against Philadelphia (10.00 ERA), dating back to 2008.
The ‘over’ is 11-2-1 in Arroyo’s last 14 starts against a team with a winning record.
This is the second series between the teams this year. Philly took three of four at home in May. The ‘over’ was 4-0 with Philly scoring 28 total runs.
Philly dominated the Reds last year, going 10-2 and sweeping them in the NLDS. However, Cincy was a respectable 2-2 at home.
The Phillies are 37-24 on the road this year (+6.6 units against the betting line) and 14-5 in the second half.
The Reds are 37-30 at home this season (-3.5 units), but 7-1 in their last eight there, feasting on easy competition (Colorado, San Diego and Washington).
Weather should be clear and in the upper 70s. Game 3 of the 4-game set on Wednesday will have Cliff Lee against hard-luck Dontrelle Willis.