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Arroyo outduels Sheets in Reds' victory

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Bronson Arroyo says his first pitch might have
been tipped off. No matter, he kept the Milwaukee Brewers guessing
the rest of the night.

Arroyo struck out eight in eight innings to outpitch Ben Sheets,
leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-1 win over the Brewers on Friday
night.

Gabe Gross hit Arroyo's first pitch over the right-field wall,
and Arroyo (3-0) said he got a "vibe" when he looked at Brewers
third base coach Dale Sveum, who was in Boston with Arroyo until
this season.

"I immediately looked at Dale Sveum and forgot that he was my
third base coach," Arroyo said. "He might have tipped him off or
he might have just been aggressive. I don't know, but I thought it
was funny nobody swung at that pitch all year."

Arroyo allowed six hits and retired 10 in a row at one point to
pin the loss on Sheets (0-2), who struck out 10 in seven innings.

Arroyo said he has no plans to be Cincinnati's ace, but he may
not have a choice after starting 3-0 for the second straight
season.

"The goal is 15 wins, 200 innings, regardless of when you get
them," Arroyo said. "I don't necessarily want to be anybody's ace
unless it comes to playoff time."

David Weathers pitched a perfect ninth for his fourth save in
five opportunities.

Brandon Phillips and Felipe Lopez both used their speed to
manufacture runs for the Reds, who had been 1-3 when scoring less
than six runs.

Lopez led off the fourth inning by striking out on Sheets' wild
pitch. He reached first without a throw and stole his sixth base on
the next pitch. Lopez went to third on Adam Dunn's groundout and
scored on Rich Aurilia's RBI single.

"The ball did exactly what I wanted it to do, make him swing
and miss," Sheets said of the pitch that got away from Chad
Moeller.

Phillips led off the fifth with a double. Sheets struck out the
next two hitters, but couldn't get out of trouble.

Ryan Freel hit a slow bouncer to Corey Koskie, whose throw from
third was off target. A stretching Prince Fielder went to the
ground to corral the errant throw but Freel reached on the infield
single.

Phillips raced around third and beat Fielder's throw home to
give Cincinnati a 2-1 lead.

"I tried to run as hard as I can, tried to score, tried to make
a nice play at home plate and it ended up being the winning run,"
Phillips said.

The Reds tacked on an insurance run in the eighth. Lopez, who
finished 2-for-4 and scored two runs, doubled and scored on Scott
Hatteberg's single.

Gross' home run off Arroyo was the first of his career leading
off a game.

He also led off the sixth with a single and reached third but
Fielder struck out trying to stop his swing on a high pitch.

The Brewers also had runners in scoring position in the seventh
and eighth innings but failed to score.

"It's kind of been our albatross or whatever you want to call
it," Gross said. "Here lately, we've really had some games where
we've had opportunities to either tie ballgames or take the lead
late and just for whatever reason just haven't come up with the big
hit."

Sheets, who recorded 10 or more strikeouts for the 11th time in
his career, consistently hit 95 mph on his fastball throughout his
performance, but failed to record his first win since tearing a
muscle in his back Aug. 26. He gave up two runs and six hits.
^Notes:@ Sheets struck out 10 or more for the first time since July
4 in a 3-2 victory against Florida. ... Freel extended his hitting
streak to eight. ... Brewers manager Ned Yost said that when a
pitcher can help himself out at the plate like Arroyo has done so
far this season, it can be worth an extra win or two over the
course of the season. Arroyo went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. ...
Reds manager Jerry Narron said Phillips has been an "outstanding
surprise." Phillips hit two home runs, including his first grand
slam, on Thursday night. He was acquired from Cleveland on April 7
for cash or a player to be named. "No one expected him to come in
here and have 13 RBI," Narron said.