Preview: Losing Joey Votto has been no big deal to the first-place Reds, who've been red hot and have managed to climb to 74-48, marking the second-best record in baseball. The Central division leaders visit Citizens Bank Park for the first of four beginning at 7:10. Roy Halladay (6-7, 3.80) tries to build on his recent stretch of quality starts. He's opposed by Mike Leake (5-7, 4.29). Cincinnati's strength stems from a well above average offense, rotation and perhaps the best bullpen in baseball. They're a very strong candidate to represent the National League in the World Series. ... Meanwhile, the Phils welcome Placido Polanco back to the club. The Phils, who are hovering 11 games off the pace in the Wild Card race, will bat Polly seventh tonight as they hope to gauge what he has left in the tank. Hector Luna was optioned to clear space.
Light posting today but back on schedule tomorrow. (I've been traveling for work since Tuesday). Didn't have a chance to discuss Kyle Kendrick, who has a knack for turning it on when he absolutely must. It must be the fifth time in his career he's fought back from the brink after it appeared he'd pitched himself out of the rotation.