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Tony Cingrani achieves rare four-strikeout inning

Apr 28, 2013, 7:15 PM EDT

Cincinnati Reds v St. Louis Cardinals Getty Images

Reds rookie Tony Cingrani was electric in his third career start this afternoon against the Nationals. The 23-year-old lefty held the Nats to two hits, walking one and striking out 11 over six innings, lowering his ERA to 1.50 in the process.

Cingrani struck out four Nationals in the bottom of the fourth, a rare feat. He struck out Denard Span to lead off the inning, but catcher Corky Miller couldn’t corral the sinker in the dirt, allowing Span to reach base safely. Danny Espinosa doubled to put runners on second and third with no outs, but Cingrani buckled down and struck out Bryce Harper, Jayson Werth, and Ian Desmond to escape the inning unscathed and with four more strikeouts in the box score.

The last Reds pitcher to strike out four in an inning was Frankie Rodriguez in 2001, per the Reds official Twitter. More specifically, it was on July 22.

  1. hoopmatch - Apr 28, 2013 at 7:40 PM

    He owes it all to Corky Miller.

  2. paperlions - Apr 28, 2013 at 8:02 PM

    This kid has been really impressive…to mow down MLB hitters like he has, as a starter, with essentially one pitch is pretty special.

    • flamethrower101 - Apr 28, 2013 at 9:14 PM

      It’s pretty fun to watch right now. But the question remains can he sustain this success long-term with just one pitch. Not everyone is Mariano Rivera.

      • tuberippin - Apr 28, 2013 at 9:56 PM

        Right now it’s still incredible…I’m interested to see how teams adjust the second time they face him, assuming he sticks in the Reds rotation for that long. He should, given his production so far, but it’s not a guarantee.

        Still, considering his other pitches are completely unpolished, to strike out as many batters as he has with just his fastball is pretty dope.

      • jeffbbf - Apr 29, 2013 at 9:22 AM

        Just one pitch…just one pitch. People just spewing what they’ve read from scouting reports purchased on a newstand. Did anyone actually read Bill’s account? He struck out Denard Span with a sinker.

  3. jimtron11 - Apr 29, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    As with the rest of those who witnesses today’s Reds-Nationals game, I came away extremely impressed with Cingrani’s start today in Washington. His curve ball has some decent bite to it and he was able to throw it for strikes this afternoon. While it’s true that he relies predominantly on his fastball (which touched 96 MPH at least five times), his curve looks better than a mere “show me,” pitch. Perhaps the biggest testament to Cingranii’s dominance today was Bryce Harper’s bunt attempt with one strike and runners on 2nd and 3rd and no outs while down 4-0 in the bottom of the 4th inning. The bunt was fouled off towards the 3rd base dugout and Harper later struck out. Harper might be the best hitter in the NL, and for him to feel the need to bunt with a runner on third and less than 2 outs indicates he had little confidence in his ability to make sold contact off of Cingrani. I can’t imagine a scenario in which Dusty would stick with Mike Leake in the rotation once Cueto is ready instead of Cingrani, who has already compiled 28 Ks in three regular season starts. By comparison, it has taken Leake his past nine starts to post 28 Ks.

  4. qacm - Apr 29, 2013 at 2:37 AM

    Language quibble: This says he “tossed a two-hit shutout.” Except that’s not right. Yes, Cingrani threw six shutout innings, but it wasn’t a ‘shutout’ because he didn’t complete the game.

  5. jm91rs - Apr 29, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Dusty is dusty. There’s no way that Cingrani stays up when Cueto comes back. Leake has had 3 very good starts in 5 attempts, and the last two weren’t terrible. A veteran (compared to Cingrani) will not get sent down to make room, Dusty NEVER does that.
    Unless Leake blows up, Cingrani is probably headed back to Louisville until someone else gets hurt.

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