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Gameday Thread, #31: 5/6 vs Reds

Bronson Arroyo, RHP (5-0, 2.06)
Claudio Vargas, RHP (3-1, 4.32)

Downtown Phoenix will be jumping tonight, with the Suns playing a playoff game seven next door to Chase Field, where the Diamondbacks take on the Reds in a battle of division leaders. This game was originally scheduled to be televised, but the Suns comeback has meant it has been shifted to Webcast only - see the team's site for details, if you happen to have high-speed internet. The plus side is, this means a previously untelevised game has been added to the schedule, and it's on Wednesday 24th May, when I'll actually be able to watch it, so I'm happy.

Last night may have been an embarrassing defeat for the Reds, but it's unlikely they'll be as generous again today. Plus, their record still stands: 12-0 in the last sixteen games, when they score more than two runs. And tonight, they definitely have the edge on the pitching match-up: it's the Reds' turn to have their undefeated ace and five-game winner on the mound, in the shape of Bronson Arroyo. Hell, he could drive in all the runs they need himself, since it seems he's also a bit of a terror with the bat - Arroyo has as many home runs this year as Shawn Green.

I think it's safe to say this poses a significant threat to our unbeaten streak, and we'll need our offense to be on good form. Vargas did at least prove, last time out, that he could pitch credibly at home, and that'll be crucial to our chances tonight. I expect Melvin to have a quick hook if necessary, since the bullpen is now well rested, and we have an off day after tomorrow's game which will provide additional recovery time if needed. A win tonight would make it seven in a row, tying the streak from September 24 to October 1 last year. The last time we won more than that, was all the way back in June 2003, when the Baby Backs put together twelve consecutive victories.