In the Bigs: Bronson’s bat is Cincy’s biggest find

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 17, 2006

Andrew Giermak

Hot in April:

At 8-1 and riding a seven-game winning streak after Friday’s 4-3 win at Shea against Milwaukee, the Mets are the hottest team in baseball.

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The hottest name in baseball right now, and for all the right reasons, could be David Wright.

For all the free agents brought in and all the money the Mets have invested in guys like Pedro, Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran, Wright is leading the way with a .429 batting average, 12 RBI, and perfect defense at third base so far.

The Cincinnati Reds, with only 152 games to go, are out to a hot start in the NL Central at 7-3.

After the Cubs swept the Cardinals, the Reds were able to take 2-of-3 from the Cubs and then beat St. Louis 1-0 Friday night behind ace Aaron Harang.

Friday night it worked well, but with &uot;ace Aaron Harang&uot; there’s still a very long season ahead for the Reds.

But…if this keeps happening:

Bronson Arroyo spent 2003-05 with the Boston Red Sox and three years prior to that with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

In those six seasons and 55 career at-bats, Arroyo had a grand total of 33 strikeouts, four hits, no homers and one RBI.

In his first two starts for Cincinnati this year, Arroyo went yard in both, both times off Cub Glendon Rusch.

Arroyo’s blast off Rusch on Wednesday at Wrigley was a legitimate blast too, landing out beyond the leftfield bleachers on Waveland Avenue.

The Reds’ true slugger, Adam Dunn (who has five HRs) said Wednesday, &uot;He’s got more homers than Wily Mo (Pena) already.&uot;

Boston traded Arroyo for Pena a couple weeks before the season started.

Names of the week:

Curt Schilling and Jonathan Papelbon.

Everyone thought the Red Sox would pound the ball this year, and before the year’s too much older, they probably will.

But, in the meantime, Schilling is back to being a dominant ace (3-0, 1.64 ERA, 16 Ks, 3 BBs), winning two 2-1 games for the Carmines and Papelbon has easily solved the Red Sox bullpen troubles.

The 25-year old who spent most of last season on the farm before being called up in August, got a chance to replace oft-injured Keith Foulke and five saves and a 0.00 ERA later, Papelbon’s clearly the man for the job.

Papelbon has appeared in six games, five of which the Red Sox offense scored five runs or less in, and allowed two base runners for the season.

Maybe Bud Selig is distracted…

Or maybe it’s taking him this long to read up on Barry Bonds, but Monday, MLB suspended Washington pitcher Felix Rodriguez for three games and Nat manager Frank Robinson for one because of the season-opening beanball festivities at Shea.

Just to recap, the Mets hit six Nats, Rodriguez then hit one Met.

It was after both benches had been warned, which was the justification by MLB for handing down the suspensions.

DC’s Jose Guillen was fined for, after being drilled for the second time in the same game by Pedro Martinez, pointing at Martinez with his bat and half-charging the mound.

Pedro got nothing from the league.