Strike one key to Arredondo's success

Strike one key to Arredondo's success

CINCINNATI -- When the Reds signed reliever Jose Arredondo in 2010 knowing that he couldn't pitch because of Tommy John surgery, they were anticipating the kind of results they have gotten from the right-hander lately.

Arredondo -- who entered Saturday with a 2-0 record and 2.70 ERA in nine appearances -- came in with a streak of 16 straight batters retired, and hadn't allowed a run in seven-straight games.

Last season, Arredondo had a 3.23 ERA in 53 games, but 31 walks to go with his 48 strikeouts in 53 innings. He retired only 31 of his first batters faced, as he was prone to pitches up and out of the strike zone. What's been the difference this season?

"Strike one," Reds manager Dusty Baker replied on Saturday. "Strike one is always a change. We figured he'd be even better two years removed from his operation. He's approaching where he was when he was with the Angels. He was coming in before and walking that first batter a lot of times."

Left-handers came in 0-for-13 vs. Arredondo, who signed a two year, $2 million deal in the offseason, while right-handers were 5-for-20 (.250).