(Updated April 8, 2017)
Since 2000, when he broke into the big leagues with the Pirates, Bronson Arroyo has been a frequent foe of the Cardinals.
Arroyo, the blonde-haired right-hander who flips breaking pitches that dart like Frisbees in an ocean breeze, has a regular-season career record of 8-18 with a 4.84 ERA in 40 appearances against the Cardinals. Most of those appearances occurred while he pitched for the Reds, including April 8, 2017, when he made his first big-league start since 2014 and yielded six runs in four innings against the Cardinals.
Here is a look at some of Arroyo’s best and worst performances against the Cardinals:
Good for Arroyo
_ May 1, 2006: Arroyo pitches a complete-game four-hitter in a 6-1 Reds victory over the Cardinals at Cincinnati. Juan Encarnacion’s home run prevents a shutout.
“He doesn’t have overpowering stuff, but he’s smart,” Cardinals left fielder John Rodriguez said to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch of Arroyo. “He knows where his pitches are going.”
Said Cardinals manager Tony La Russa: “He got a lot of outs in a lot of different parts of the (strike) zone. That’s good pitching.” Boxscore
_ June 12, 2008: Arroyo pitches six shutout innings and hits a home run off a hanging slider from Joel Pineiro in a 6-2 Reds victory at Cincinnati. Arroyo departs after experiencing cramps in his right forearm.
“He didn’t leave pitches over the middle,” Cardinals left fielder Skip Schumaker said. “He was effective pitching to the small part of the plate.” Boxscore
_ May 16, 2010: Arroyo tosses a complete-game seven-hitter and knocks in two runs in a 7-2 Reds victory at Cincinnati. Cardinals outfielder Colby Rasmus describes Arroyo’s assortment of pitches as “doo-doo” and “slop.”
Said Arroyo: “I could care less what adjective you put next to my pitch selection. The name of the game is to put a zero on the board as many times as I can.” Boxscore
Good for Cardinals
_ Aug. 10, 2006: Arroyo braids his long, blonde hair into cornrows in an effort to change his luck, but the Cardinals aren’t impressed. Arroyo yields three home runs _ solo shots by Jim Edmonds and Chris Duncan and a two-run blow by Scott Spiezio _ in the Cardinals’ 6-1 victory over the Reds at Cincinnati.
“I’m at the end of my rope with superstitions,” Arroyo told the Dayton Daily News afterward in the clubhouse. “Either I’m going to bring a live chicken in here, or just go out and pitch.” Boxscore
_ June 6, 2007: In the seventh inning, with the Reds ahead, 4-3, Ryan Ludwick ties the score with a pinch-hit home run off Arroyo. Then, with two outs, Albert Pujols follows with a two-run blast off Arroyo that lifts the Cardinals to a 6-4 triumph at St. Louis.
“All the runs they scored were on mistakes,” Arroyo said. “With Pujols, I tried to freeze him with a heater in, but it wandered over the middle of the plate.” Boxscore
_ Sept. 26, 2008: Arroyo gives up a career-high 13 hits in seven innings but escapes with a no-decision in the Cardinals’ 7-6 victory at St. Louis. Arroyo reaches 200 innings pitched for the fourth consecutive season. Boxscore
_ July 5, 2009: The Cardinals pound Arroyo for 11 hits and eight runs in five innings and win, 10-1, at Cincinnati. Said Reds manager Dusty Baker: “Bronson got kicked around pretty good. He was a sacrificial lamb because my bullpen was in bad shape.” Boxscore
Previously: Cardinals, Reds stage star-studded brawl in 1967