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  • 26 Jan
    导出博客文章Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat sees Saturday nights much-anticipated clash
    against Sydney FC as an opportunity to burst the A-League leaders bubble.As far
    as propositions go in the A-League right now, they dont come much more daunting
    than playing the Sky Blues at Allianz Stadium.Graham Arnolds side is undefeated,
    three points clear at the top of the table and havent conceded a goal after four
    rounds.Muscat concedes Victory are the underdogs going into the first Big Blue
    of the season, but is confident his side travels to Sydney expecting success
    rather than hoping for it.Were going at the top of the table team who havent
    conceded a goal, theyre title favourites, FFA Cup favourites - you name it - but
    we still go there with no fear, Muscat said on Friday.I certainly feel that and
    the group certainly feels that.Well go across to Sydney where weve done well in
    terms of performances, certainly in my time.What better way to go there and
    burst Sydneys bubble?Muscat agreed the ladder doesnt lie as an indicator of form
    but believes its too early in the season to declare Arnolds side the stand out
    team in the competition.Theres a lot of factors you need to go into, he
    said.This is our third trip in (five) rounds and Sydney have left New South
    Wales once in four rounds.So it will work itself out in time. At this point in
    time theyve performed very well.Victory are riding high after their 6-1 drubbing
    of Wellington Phoenix last week that moved them into third spot on the ladder,
    five points adrift of Sydney.The only sour note was the loss of Daniel
    Georgievski, who is out for up to a month with a broken collarbone.Skipper Carl
    Valeri and German import Maxi Beister wont travel with the team, with Muscat
    taking a patient approach as the duo work into peak fitness.Were not in the
    business of taking risks so early in the season, he said.Carls got through near
    enough everything but at this point in time I dont see the point.Maxi wont be in
    the squad either. I just feel that there are players in the team that are ahead
    of him in terms of fitness at this point in time so we wont put him at risk.Hes
    improved ... hes been here just over a week now, so its still early. We
    estimated that it was going to take some time.STATS THAT MATTER:* Melbourne
    Victory are undefeated in their last nine games against Sydney FC (W4, D5)*
    Graham Arnold is yet to defeat a Victorian side at home as Sydney manager (D4,
    L2)* Besart Berisha has scored three goals in Victorys last four games against
    Sydney, one-third of his teams total in that run* Sydney have five successive
    clean sheets; no side has ever gone six games without conceding
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    Cleary will likely miss at least the next three games. Its been an
    injury-plagued season for Datsyuk, who has suited up for just 39 games. LOS
    ANGELES -- Skip Schumakers first career home run at Dodger Stadium couldnt have
    come at a more opportune time, especially now that hes playing for the home
    team. Schumaker hit a tiebreaking two-run shot off longtime NL West rival
    Bronson Arroyo while filling in for the ailing Carl Crawford, Hyun-Jin Ryu gave
    up two hits over seven innings and retired his last 13 batters, and the Los
    Angeles Dodgers beat the Cincinnati Reds 4-1 Saturday night. "I grew up in L.A.
    going to Dodger games, so Ive always thought about hitting a home run in Dodger
    Stadium -- and actually doing it is pretty incredible," Schumaker said. "Its
    kind of a surreal feeling. I get lucky every now and then. Every 200 at-bats or
    so, I run into one." Ryu (9-3) had nine strikeouts, all in a span of 13 batters.
    The first came against Joey Votto, who took a called third strike after
    Chris Heisey hit his first triple of the season with two out in the third.
    Cincinnatis run came on a homer by Jay Bruce in the second. The Dodgers
    increased their NL West lead to 1 1/2 games over Arizona. Ryu faced South Korean
    countryman Shin-Soo Choo for the first time in the major leagues. The Reds
    centre fielder walked, grounded out to first base and struck out. "Im sure Choo
    was on his mind," catcher A.J. Ellis said. "I mean, its a big deal. Choo is one
    of his best friends and one of his baseball idols. So with him facing him in
    America in an atmosphere like this, and also playing in front of a huge TV
    audience back in Korea, its pretty neat to know youre a part of that. It was
    really cool to see those guys match up. You could hear the crowd on every pitch
    and every swing." Kenley Jansen got the last three outs for his 14th save.
    Crawford, who singled his first three times up in the Dodgers 2-1 victory Friday
    night and then made a brief visit to an emergency room on Saturday to get
    checked on for a high temperature and fever, was held out of the lineup. Manager
    Don Mattingly replaced him with Schumaker, who came in with more plate
    appearances (53) and hits (18) against Reds starter Bronson Arroyo than anyone
    else on Los Angeles roster. "Its a good feeling when you have a situation like
    today where Carl wasnt able to play and Skip can step in and be a more than
    capable guy," Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said. "Hes a great veteran
    who battles every at-bat. Thats what this team is built upon -- experience on
    the bench, experience on the field. And hopefully well take that all the way
    through." Schumaker came through in the fifth, driving Arroyos 1-0 pitch to
    centre field for his second home run of the season and a 3-1 Dodgers lead after
    a leadoff single by Mark Ellis. "If you look at the numbers, it says I have some
    hits off him. But a lot of those were bloop hits, lucky hits, and not too many
    were squared up," said Schumaker, who also doubled in the seventh inning and
    scored the Dodgers fourth run on aa two-out single by Gonzalez.dddddddddddd It
    was the 300th home run given up Arroyo (9-8), including a career-high and major
    league-worst 46 in 2011. The 14-year veteran right-hander was charged with three
    runs and eight hits in 5 1-3 innings, after going 4-0 with a 2.30 ERA in his
    previous six starts against Los Angeles. He was coming off a complete-game 11-0
    victory at San Francisco on Monday. The Dodgers got a run in the first on a
    two-out double by Hanley Ramirez after Yasiel Puig walked, advanced on a flyout
    and stole third without a throw. But the Reds tied it in the second when Bruce
    drove Ryus 2-0 pitch into the right field pavilion for his 22nd home run. Since
    the start of the 2010 season, Bruce leads all left-handed batters with 42 homer
    against lefty pitchers -- including eight this season. "I think its helped him
    being around Joey Votto, and seeing how Joey hits lefties," manager Dusty Baker
    said. "Most guys, I think, have trouble with lefties because they dont see them
    (enough). I mean, its hard enough to find a right-handed batting practice
    pitcher that can throw strikes -- and its almost impossible to find a lefty to
    do it. But weve got two of them -- Mark Berry and Ronnie Ortegon. And we always
    travel with one, so I think that helps a lot. "Thats something that Barry Bonds
    always did in San Francisco," added Baker, who watched Bonds homer 125 times
    against lefties during the 10 seasons he managed baseballs career home run
    leader. "We always had a left-hander throwing to Barry in batting practice. So I
    took a page out of Barrys book, and Id like to give Barry credit for that."
    Bruce, the Reds right fielder, also threw out Puig at first base in the fifth
    after the overaggressive rookie made a wide turn on his single toward the line.
    The play immediately followed Schumakers homer. It was the hustle by catcher
    Devin Mesoraco that made it possible, because he ran up the line and took the
    throw. In Thursday nights series opener, Puig made a similar wide turn around
    first on a single to centre and ended up at third base after Choo threw the ball
    past first baseman Votto and the ball ended up in the stands for a two-base
    error. NOTES: Ryu is 5-1 with a 1.83 ERA in 10 home starts. The Dodgers have won
    each of his last six outings, including three no-decisions. ... Arroyo has given
    up a franchise-record 238 home runs since joining the Reds in a March 2006 trade
    from Boston for Wily Mo Pena. ... Reds RHP Jonathan Broxton, on the disabled
    list since June 15 with an elbow strain, threw 20 pitches during early batting
    practice. Baker was noncommittal when asked about the best-case scenario for the
    former Dodger closers return. ... Los Angeles pitching coach Rick Honeycutt
    rejoined the club after missing four games because of the death of his
    mother-in-law. ... Vottos consecutive game on-base streak ended at 38 after he
    went 0 for 3. That left Ramirez with the longest active streak in the majors at
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