© 2006 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.

06/07/06 11:56 PM ET

Arroyo takes another crack at Rusch

Chicago (23-35) at Cincinnati (35-24), 7:10 p.m. ET

Winners of seven straight games and now co-leaders of the National League Central, the Reds open a 10-game homestand Thursday with the first of four games against the Cubs.

Chicago lefty Glendon Rusch's biggest concern may not be that he's opposing Bronson Arroyo the pitcher, but that he'll have to deal with Arroyo the hitter.

This will be the third time this season Arroyo and Rusch have started against each other. Arroyo has hit homers off Rusch the first two times (April 5 and April 11) on his way to wins.

Cincinnati is coming off a successful 7-2 road trip, but it was a journey that started 0-2 before taking one game at Wrigley Field last week.

Pitching matchup
CIN: RHP Bronson Arroyo (7-2, 2.40 ERA)
The Reds average 6.08 runs per game when Arroyo pitches.

CHC: LHP Glendon Rusch (2-5, 6.86 ERA)
The lefty is back in the rotation after working from the bullpen in May. He allowed three runs on four hits over five innings against St. Louis on Saturday.

Player to watch
Arroyo, but at the plate. Besides having two long balls this season against Rusch, he ended an 0-for-27 skid Saturday by going 3-for-4 with a career-best four RBIs.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• FSN Ohio

On radio
• WLW 700-AM

Up next
• Fri: Cubs (RHP Greg Maddux, 6-5, 4.77) at Reds (RHP Elizardo Ramirez, 2-4, 3.95), 7:10 p.m. ET
• Sat: Cubs (RHP Carlos Zambrano, 4-3, 3.09) at Reds (LHP Brandon Claussen, 3-6, 5.40), 6:10 p.m. ET
• Sun: Cubs (RHP Kerry Wood, 1-2, 4.12) at Reds (LHP Eric Milton, 4-2, 4.14), 1:15 p.m. ET

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.