Five-run fourth sinks Cubs
The Three Stars from a 7-3 Reds win over the Cubs:
No. 3 star: Bronson Arroyo — 6 1/3 ip, 9 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 109 pitches/68 strikes. Arroyo did not benefit from some shaky play behind him early…like a two-out error by Drew Stubbs in the first inning, an infield hit by Brett Jackson that Brandon Phillips couldn’t glove in the top of the fourth and his own run-scoring wild pitch that scored Starlin Castro, but Arroyo settled in and pitched well, especially after getting a five-run bottom of the fourth.
“Some of the crazy plays that happened like that knuckler to Brandon really hurt me because it just made me pitch a lot harder and a lot more pitches than I wanted to, which got me out of the game earlier than I would have liked,” Arroyo said. “I did settle down and we scored some runs, which allowed me to put away the frustration from the inning before.”
No. 2 star: Ryan Ludwick — 2-for-4, HR — Ludwick started the big five-run rally in the fourth with his 22nd homer of the season to leadoff. He has homered in four of his last seven games and has a nine-game hitting streak. He’s batting .329 over his last 49 games.
“I’ve always said it takes guys that are older a little longer to get it but once they get it, they keep it for an extended period of time,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “:That’s what he’s done. He’s driving in runs, hitting home runs and what a welcome sight he’s been since the All-Star break.”
No. 1 star: Todd Frazier — 2-for-4, two-run HR. Frazier has hit safely in seven of his last eight games and is batting .517 (15-for-29) over that stretch. There was no worry on his or the team’s part when Chicago opened a 3-1 lead in the top of the fourth.
“We’re relaxed,” Frazier said. “We know our pitching staff is going to be there. We know we’ve got the hitters. Guys step up every single day. Everybody knows their role. When you know your role, everything’s going to be fine. It was pretty fun to watch that inning.”
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News and notes:
*Scott Rolen is hitting .372 (22-for-59) over his last 18 games.
*Jay Bruce has homered in four of his last five games after his one-out solo shot in the fifth.
*Aroldis Chapman appeared in a non-save situation in the ninth and retired the side in order. Chapman, who hadn’t appeared since Aug. 12, needed the work. But it snapped his franchise record 16-straight appearances with a save.
*The Reds are 25-9 since the All-Star break.