When Bronson Arroyo took the mound on April 15, the Reds were riding a five-game losing streak and the club's usually dependable starting rotation was scuffling.
That all seemed to changed, however, after Arroyo tossed eight solid innings against the Phillies, allowing just two runs as Cincinnati got back in the win column with a 4-2 victory.
Since then, the Reds have won three of four games with their starters leading the way, surrendering a combined two runs over the four outings following Arroyo's start.
Reds manager Busty Baker credited Arroyo for getting the staff back on track.
"He's the one who started this streak here," Baker said. "Nobody likes to be outdone. You get on a roll and that's what happens. It just shows you how important starting pitching is. It takes pressure off of your bullpen and everybody stays strong. It starts with starting pitching. The better they're pitching, the better everybody feels."
Arroyo will look to continue the trend he started when he toes the rubber again Saturday as the Reds try to take the series lead against the Marlins.
Arroyo has faced Miami 13 times in his career and is 1-4 with a 4.28 ERA. These Marlins, though, are much different from the Marlins the right-hander has seen before. Arroyo will try to be flexible on the mound Saturday as he tries to get a feel for the new-look Miami squad.
"It's taking the scouting report and trying to manipulate it into your game without having played against these guys in the past," he said. "You have awareness ... to be out [on] the field to make adjustments on the fly. That's how I always have pitched."
Opposing Arroyo for the Marlins will be Wade LeBlanc, who struggled his last time out against the Nationals, allowing seven earned runs over 3 2/3 innings.
Washington pounced on the left-hander for four runs on five hits in the first inning.
"We're only three starts in, but something has got to change," LeBlanc said after the game. "We've got to figure out how to get through that first inning unscathed, and give these guys a chance. That's priority No. 1 at this point."
Reds: Hanigan still ailing from injured thumb
Ryan Hanigan's right thumb is still hurting more than a week after it was injured on a foul tip. The catcher, who was wearing a wrap on his hand Friday, is doing all he can to not let it affect his play.
"I'm just going to keep going through it," Hanigan said. "I can manage it enough in games to get through. I'm trying to produce for these guys.
"It's going to linger. I've taken my medicine and have done everything I can for it. But when it gets in that joint like that, it's going to be painful."
The Reds, who had Hanigan go in for an MRI exam, aren't considering placing him on the disabled list yet, according to manager Dusty Baker. The catcher has struggled at the plate so far this year, batting just .079 in 12 games, including a 0-for-3 performance Friday.
"It's the lack of strength that can be an issue, but I can put it out of my mind during games enough to not let it affect me too much," Hanigan said. "Like anything with your hands, it's a pain ... . I'll keep doing my treatment and hopefully I will wake up one of these days and I will have the strength back that I need."
Marlins: Maine designated for assignment, Koehler promoted
John Maine, a non-roster invitee who opened the season with the Marlins, was designated for assignment on Friday.
In four relief appearances, the 31-year-old posted a 12.27 ERA in 7 1/3 innings.
In his place, Tom Koehler was called up from Triple-A New Orleans to fill the long relief, emergency starter role.
Koehler made three starts for New Orleans, and in 17 innings he had a 1.06 ERA with 14 strikeouts and 10 walks.
The 26-year-old made his big league debut with Miami last September. He appeared in eight games with one start, and struck out 13 in 13 1/3 innings.
• Miami has scored just 35 runs this season, the lowest output of any club.
• The Reds are 8-3 at Great American Ball Park.
Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.