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Reds remove injured Johnny Cueto from roster, activate Mike Leake for Game 4 start

Oct 10, 2012, 11:51 AM EDT

Division Series - Cincinnati Reds v San Francisco Giants - Game One Getty Images

Johnny Cueto has been removed from the Reds’ playoff roster due to his strained oblique, which means he will not start Game 4 of the NLDS tonight and will not be eligible to pitch in the NLCS if Cincinnati advances past San Francisco.

Cueto exited his Game 1 start after just eight pitches and given the typical recovery timetable for oblique injuries the odds were against him being ready for an NLCS start anyway, so the Reds made the move in order to activate Mike Leake for tonight’s start against the Giants.

The alternative was using Mat Latos on short rest after he threw 57 pitches in relief of Cueto in Game 1. Leake has been throwing on the side in order to stay ready if needed, but he was left off the postseason roster and hasn’t pitched since tossing six shutout innings against the Pirates on September 29. And if there’s a Game 5 the Reds will turn to Latos on full rest.

Cueto, who didn’t miss a start in the regular season while going 19-9 with a 2.78 ERA in 217 innings, would be eligible to return for the World Series. Leake had a 4.58 ERA and 116/41 K/BB ratio in 179 innings during the regular season, including a one-run complete game in his lone start against the Giants.

  1. amunoz78 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:04 PM

    If Bailey’s gonna pitch like he’s been going, and Bronson Arroyo can be depended upon for 6 innings, I still feel good about where the Reds are.

    • ajcardsfan - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:44 PM

      Bailey was a machine last night, and bearing his resemblance to Christian Bale (not sure who else thinks that) It was like watching Bruce Wayne dominate batters

  2. dondada10 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    Something tells me that Cardinals fans are gonna get a kick out of this.

    • metalhead65 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:29 PM

      screw the cardinals and their fans. I will root for the yankees before I ever root for them.

    • Nick C - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:49 PM

      Only a Reds fan would “kick” like their cowardly hero. Indeed I am not sad that he is out. In fact if he never pitches again I would be delighted. I have made an exception to my code that I never root for an injury. As far as I’m concerned the Kung Fu Coward deserves whatever ill fate befalls him.

      • bengalsucker - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:33 PM

        Man get over it. Seriously. It’s way in the past now. Besides, it’s not like he knocked out your King Whiner (or should I say Weiner?) (Carpenter) by kicking him. He knocked out a washed up, barely serviceable, Jason LaRue. Not that I want to see anyone get hurt that way but maybe have your resident hot head (Molina) cool off and not start fights over words…Sticks and stones my friend. Who am I kidding? It was the whiniest (is that a word? lol) team in baseball with the biggest a$$hole pitcher and catcher combo in the league. Do I even have to say who I’m talking about there? Your team started the fight. Cueto was defending his teammates and got pinned to the net. He did what he had to do to get out. He is a pitcher. No way he’s going to use his fists in a fight like that.

      • Nick C - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:12 PM

        bengalsucker – Jealous of the Cardinals success. Kung Fu Coward was not defending his teammates. He ran around the scrum to get to the back to get in on the action. His TEAMMATES were pinning him to the wall/screen. Others were also pinned and didn’t start kicking with metal weapons. He’s a coward plain and simple.

      • bengalsucker - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:33 PM

        Oh I’m overly jealous Nick. You caught me! I’d root for the lowly Royals before I’d ever root for the whiney, self centered Cardinals who think everyone owes them something. I’ll take my Reds any day of the week over the Cards. BPhillips was right about what he said. Although he should have put a clause in and included the fans too.

      • Nick C - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:46 PM

        bengalsucker – Never expected that you would root for a rival. I think its clear that the Cardinals success has made you jealous. I hope the Reds get through to the NLCS so the Cardinals can kick their ass just like they did to the Brewers last year.

    • ajcardsfan - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:53 PM

      Why would any of us get a kick out of it? Injuries aren’t fun, especially when they’re at inopportune times. While I love my team and will always support them, it doesn’t mean I don’t want to get good games. I wanted Cueto to pitch, I like to see teams at their best in postseason, Bailey was awesome to watch last night.

      • yourenotfromhere - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:50 PM

        My thoughts exactly

      • paperlions - Oct 10, 2012 at 8:48 PM

        It’s called projection.

  3. Lukehart80 - Oct 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

    As someone without a rooting interest among the N.L, teams, I’m just bummed to lose one of the best pitchers on any of the remaining teams, someone who deserves Cy Young Consideration, I’d have liked to see him out there for a Game 5.

  4. SOBEIT - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    As a Giants fan, it doesn’t matter that Cueto is out. The Giants have been terrible so far against anybody the Reds throw at us. Even last nights game was a win by taking advantage of the few mistakes made by the Reds. It’s hard to win a game, let alone a series, with 2 hits or less per game. Yes, hypothetically speaking, we should do better against Leake because Cueto just owns us and Leake has struggled this season in comparison. But it will still be Torture watching my team’s offense against the Reds pitching staff.

    On an interesting side note, we are also going with a 5th starter instead of the Cy (Lincecum in this case). But Zito has done well in the 2nd half. So at this point I have no idea what to expect as an outcome. I just hope we don’t make Leake look like Cy Leake.

    • bengalsucker - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:29 PM

      Not to diss your team bc I’m legitimately worried about this game, but Leake pitched a complete, 1-run game against you guys already this season (as stated in the article above). So I wouldn’t say he struggled against your team at all.

      • SOBEIT - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:47 PM

        Maybe I phrased it incorrectly because I was not referring to Leake’s record against the Giants but his overall record compared to Cueto…but since I put it after stating how Cueto owns us, I can see how you made that correlation. That was my error. But the statement still stands that the Giants are just not hitting in this series and it doesn’t matter who the Reds use to be the starter becuase the Giants have struggled against everyone so far. And I am extra nervous because we are starting Zito…but Zito has earned the right to start because he has been pretty impressive in the second half and helped cushion the fact that the other starters like Bum and Voge have struggled.

      • SOBEIT - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:53 PM

        To follow-up on the fact that Leake threw a shutout against us…Bum also threw a shutout against the Reds in that series in late June…and see what happened to him in this series.

  5. bengalsucker - Oct 10, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    I’m not saying I’m confident in Leake repeating what he’s done already. I’m as worried as anyone about him pitching today. He’s either hot or he’s cold. There’s really no in-between. I was just saying, I saw the comment about Leake struggling and I just commented and said he didn’t struggle against you guys last time. That’s all.

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