Former ace Cliff Lee can continue a career's worth of dominance against Cincinnati on Tuesday when the Philadelphia Phillies face the Reds in the second test of a four-game series at Citizens Bank Park.
Lee won 17 games with the Phillies last season and 22 with Cleveland in 2008, but has slumped through injury and ineffectiveness to just two wins in nine decisions across 21 starts this season.
He's had a particularly rough go of it at home in Philadelphia, where he's winless in nine starts with a 4.59 earned run average - and 0-5 record - in 64 2/3 innings of work.
His last decision was a 4-1 home loss to St. Louis on Aug. 11 and his last outing was a no-decision five days later in which he allowed four runs in 7 2/3 innings of a 7-4 loss at Milwaukee.
Lee is 6-2 in 10 starts against the Reds with a 4.04 ERA in 64 2/3 innings.
He'll be opposed by Texas-born righty Homer Bailey, who's won just once in five starts since a four-game win streak between July 2 and 20.
The 26-year-old's ERA was trimmed from 4.42 to 3.74 in the stretch with wins over Los Angeles, San Diego, St. Louis and Milwaukee, but it's since gone back up to 4.16 while he's gone 1-2 in five starts.
His last outing was an 8-4 loss to the New York Mets in which he allowed six runs in 5 2/3 innings.
Bailey is 0-3 in five career starts against the Phillies.
On Monday, John Mayberry Jr. clubbed a two-run home run, scored three times and finished with three RBI as the Phillies crushed the Reds, 12-5.
Ryan Howard crushed a solo home run among his two hits and had a pair of RBI. Chase Utley knocked in two runs, while Domonic Brown added a two-run double for the Phillies, who have won three straight games. Erik Kratz contributed a solo shot, as the Phillies beat the Reds for the 12th time in the last 13 meetings.
"When he gets a good pitch to hit, he hits it," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said of Mayberry. "His bat's quicker. He has to learn to hit right handed pitching."
Roy Halladay (7-7) allowed five runs on 10 hits and a walk over seven innings to bounce back from a loss to Miami his last time out. B.J. Rosenberg, Antonio Bastardo and Josh Lindblom completed the rout out of the bullpen.
Jay Bruce went 3-for-3 with two RBI, while Devin Mesoraco and Chris Heisey each drove in a run for the NL Central-leading Reds, who have dropped two of their last three.
Mike Leake (5-8) allowed seven runs on 10 hits and a walk with four strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings.
"Leake couldn't get the ball down," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "There were too many pitches up in the zone."
The Phillies won seven of eight games between the teams in 2011 and haven't lost the season series to the Reds since 2003.