The biggest news pertaining to the upcoming Reds vs. Phillies series is the return of Chase Utley. The 32-year-old all-star second baseman will make his 2011 season debut after being activated from the disabled list.
Utley has missed time with tendinitis and chondromalacia of his right knee. He has been playing in games with the Phillies extended spring training club and their High A Level team in Clearwater in recent weeks, as part of a rehab assignment.
A secondary storyline of importance is the rematch of last year's Divisional Playoffs, when Philadelphia swept Cincinnati out of the postseason in 3 games. Roy Halladay tossed the second ever postseason no-hitter in game 1 of that series at Citizens Bank Park.
In the opener for this series, the Phillies will send lefty Cole Hamels, who shut out the Reds to force their exit from the 2010 playoffs, to the mound. Cincinnati will counter with right-hander Bronson Arroyo, who hasn't had much success against Philadelphia in his career.
Read ahead for much more information on the pitching match ups and other stats for this 4-game series.
Monday, 7:05PM. Bronson Arroyo (3-4, 4.11 ERA) vs. Cole Hamels (5-2, 2.92 ERA). In 8 career games against the Phillies, Arroyo is 1-5 with a 5.54 ERA. In 3 road starts this season, Arroyo is 2-0 with a 0.92 ERA. Placido Polanco is 6-for-17 (.353 avg) in his career against Arroyo. In 5 home starts this year, Hamels has a 2-2 record and a 3.48 ERA. In 7 career regular season starts against the Reds, Hamels is 6-0 with a 1.07 ERA. Brandon Phillips is 2-for-22 (.091 avg) in regular season action in his career against Hamels.
Tuesday, 7:05PM. Johnny Cueto (2-1, 1.45 ERA) vs. Vance Worley (2-0, 1.12 ERA). In 4 career regular season starts against the Phillies, the righty Cueto has a 1-2 record with a 5.96 ERA. Jimmy Rollins is 2-for-11 (.182 avg) in regular season action against Cueto. Batters are hitting .186 against Cueto this season. In 5 starts for Triple A Lehigh Valley this season, Worley posted a 2-2 record with a 3.51 ERA. In 9 Major League appearances, the 23-year-old Worley has held opponents to a .168 batting average.
Wednesday, 7:05. Travis Wood (3-5, 5.17 ERA) vs. Roy Halladay (6-3, 2.21 ERA). These two pitchers faced off last July in Philadelphia and each hurler threw 9 shut out innings. In 5 road starts this season, the left-handed Wood has posted a 1-1 record with a 4.20 ERA. Wood has a 7.04 ERA in 6 night starts this year. In his last 6 starts, Halladay is 4-2 with a 1.85 ERA. In 6 home starts this season, Halladay has a 4-1 record with a 2.47 ERA.
Thursday, 1:05PM. Homer Bailey (3-1, 2.08 ERA) vs. Cliff Lee (3-4, 3.37 ERA). Bailey is 0-2 with a 6.43 ERA in 3 regular season games against the Phillies. In 4 starts this season, Bailey has held opponents to a .198 batting average. Lee is 2-1 with a 2.31 ERA in 5 starts at Citizens Bank Park this year. In 8 career starts against the Reds in his career, Lee has a 4-2 record with a 4.69 ERA. Brandon Phillips is 5-for-15 (.333 avg) with a homerun in his career against Lee.
Last year's National League Most Valuable Player Joey Votto is batting .343 with a 1.073 ERA on the road this year through games played on Saturday.
In 7 career regular season games against the Phillies, Drew Stubbs has a .200 average with a .473 OPS. In 21 road games this season, Stubbs is batting .247.
In 12 career regular season games against the Phillies, Reds closer Francisco Cordero has a 1-0 record with 6 saves in 8 chances with a 2.19 ERA and a .116 batting average against.
Jimmy Rollins is a career .287 hitter with 50 runs scored in 67 regular season games against the Reds. Rollins has a .676 OPS in 33 night games this season.
In 15 home games this season, Carlos Ruiz is batting .163. Also, Ruiz is batting .174 off of left-handed pitchers thus far in 2011.
Chase Utley is a career .324 hitter in 41 regular season games against the Reds. Utley posted a .925 OPS in 61 home game last season.
Photo- Joe Wombough
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