Posted September 15, 2013 on
AP on Fox
Los Angeles Angels
Sunday was a rather up-and-down day for the Cincinnati Reds.
The Reds will look to bounce back from a blown lead as Johnny Cueto returns against the Houston Astros on Monday night.
The Reds' lead in the NL wild-card race dropped to 4 1/2 games over Washington after they failed to hold four-run seventh-inning lead Sunday in a 6-5 loss at Milwaukee. Four relievers gave up a run apiece, with Zach Duke surrendering a walk-off home run to rookie Sean Halton in the bottom of the ninth.
"That is probably as crushing of a defeat as we've had all year," starter Bronson Arroyo said.
The pain of Halton's home run was exacerbated by Jay Bruce's near three-run homer in the top of the frame, which was robbed by Carlos Gomez.
"We can still finish strong, but that is not going to take away the sting we feel today," manager Dusty Baker said. "You have to feel the sting today and get over it tomorrow because we have another series tomorrow. This does hurt. It really hurts."
After losing for the fourth time in six games, the Reds (84-66) will be happy to see Cueto make his first start since June 28.
Cincinnati's ace with a 19-9 record and a 2.78 ERA in 2012, Cueto (4-2, 3.33 ERA) was having a similarly successful 2013 season before a strained right lat muscle caused him to miss 2 1/2 months.
"He appears relatively ready from what we've seen," Baker told the team's official website. "It's worth the effort because he's Johnny Cueto. The more we get out of him tomorrow, the more we get out of him the next time, and who knows where he's going to be ready come playoff time."
Baker said Cueto would have a pitch count.
"It's kind of like a spring training game to get him ready," Baker said. "That gives us a tremendous boost."
He'll start in place of Tony Cingrani, out with a back injury. Baker said Cingrani may join the team for its weekend series at Pittsburgh.
Cueto, meanwhile, will try to pick up his third win in 13 starts against the Astros. He earned his second victory against Houston on April 28, 2012, with seven scoreless innings but was then tagged for four runs and nine hits in four innings of a 5-1 loss on September 9, 2012.
Cueto will face an Astros team that scored three runs over the final two games of its weekend series against the Los Angeles Angels. Houston had scored 34 runs and batted .336 over a prior four-game winning streak.
Erik Bedard (4-10, 4.47) will also be making his return to the rotation, but under slightly different circumstances. The left-hander was moved to the bullpen after he went 0-6 with a 4.53 ERA in his last nine starts for the Astros (51-98). He was most troubled by wildness as he walked 31 in 49 2-3 innings.
Bedard looked strong on Sept. 8, however, pitching four scoreless innings out of the bullpen in a 7-2 loss at Oakland.
Manager Bo Porter told the Astros' official website that he welcomes the chance to be part of the postseason hunt starting Monday, even though his team is on the verge of becoming the first club to reach triple figures in losses in three consecutive seasons since Kansas City from 2004-06.
"I think it's good for our players to look to the other side of the field and see the type of intensity that those teams and their fans are going to bring to the ballpark with a playoff berth hanging in the balance," Porter said.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Reds are about to add some ammunition for their postseason push.
In what is being touted as the best news the Reds have received in quite awhile, the oft-injured Johnny Cueto is set to come off the disabled list and make the start for his team on Monday in Houston. The right-hander has been sidelined since June 29 with a strained lat muscle, which has sent him to the DL...
Johnny Cueto will return to the mound tonight for the Cincinnati Reds to face the Houston Astros. The return of Cueto has been kept a bit under wraps as the Reds tried to figure what was best for Cueto and what was best for the Reds going forward in their push for the postseason.
Cueto hasn’t pitched since June 28th, and with all the Minor League action being over for some time...
Your browser does not support iframes.
When folks think about Reds All-Star first basemen Joey Votto, the first thing that likely comes to mind is his patience and prowess at the plate.
However, the 30-year-old is not just a one-tool player, he can field his position fairly well, too. And Votto put that skill on full display during the second inning of Sunday's game in...
Wednesday night, Tokyo Yakult Swallows outfielder Wladimir Balentien tied the legendary Sadaharu Oh, Tuffy Rhodes and Alex Cabrera with his 55th home run of the season. Sunday, with a first inning bomb against the Hanshin Tigers..."Coco" owned the record outright. “I feel so relieved right now,” the Curacao native told the Japan Times. “Lot of emotions. Just to...
On Friday, Ryan Ludwick had all sorts of issues trying to flag down Jonathan Lucroy's line drive in the bottom of the first inning. Ludwick squatted and attempted to find a different angle on the ball, but it went whizzing by his glove, and all the way to the wall for a double. Two batters later, Brewers slugger Carlos Gomez delivered a two-run single to give Milwaukee an...
Your browser does not support iframes.
There have been plenty of folks to question Joey Votto's power this year after the Canadian native underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in the offseason.
However, anyone who saw the towering blast Votto delivered in the sixth inning of Saturday's game in Milwaukee has to be convinced he still has pop.
Watch and admire Votto...
Johnny Cueto threw five scoreless innings in his return from the disabled list and Zack Cozart homered and drove in four runs to help the Cincinnati Reds to a 6-1 win over the Houston Astros on Monday night.
Pitching for the first time since straining the muscle below his right shoulder on June 28, Cueto (5-2) allowed five hits and struck out five with one walk for the win.
Josh Ravin was joined by Kyle Lotzkar this afternoon as the Reds designated them for assignment to clear spots on the 40-man roster.
Homer Bailey is suddenly looking a lot like the pitcher who led off July with his second career no-hitter.
Bailey hopes to help the Cincinnati Reds avoid a fourth loss in five games Saturday when they visit the Milwaukee Brewers.
Cincinnati had its lead for the final wild-card spot cut to 4 12 games over streaking Washington with Friday's 5-1 loss. Ryan Ludwick lost a ball...
With only two weeks left in the regular season, the Cincinnati Reds find themselves 3.5 games out of the National League Central division lead but currently holding the second N.L. Wild Card spot. They have gone without one of their best relievers for most of the season, but that is about to change. MLB.com's Kevin Massoth reports that reliever Sean Marshall is inching closer...
The Reds won on Saturday. This is not an unimportant development for a team that is coming off a series loss to the Cubs and had dropped its series opener to the Brewers while trying to hold down a playoff spot.
The Reds beat the Brewers 7-3 at Miller Park but manager Dusty Baker wasn't exactly pleased afterward.
"We're playing ugly baseball" Baker said. "...
Despite posting a disappointing 2-4 record against the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers last week, the Reds held their position at No. 8 in the updated batch of Major League Baseball Power Rankings released by ESPN.com on Monday.
Morale was high heading into the home series against the Cubbies last Monday. However, losing two out of three against a team the Reds had previously...
Image made by Tyler Shelton at tylersheltonart.com
By: Izsak RappStaff Writer
After a devastating pair of loses to the Brew Crew, and with Carlos Gomez robbing another Reds potential winning home run, there are definitely reasons to hang your head as a Reds fan. But there are definitely things to be happy about, too!One thing to look forward to is Shin-Soo Choo possibly taking...
Tweet For Seattle Mariners fans the name Wladimir Balentien may ring a bell. He spent three seasons with the franchise, hitting 12 home runs in 401 at-bats from 2007-2009. Balentien was then traded to the Cincinnati Reds before becoming a free agent in 2010. Since 2011 Balentien could be found in Japan’s Central […]
It seems as though the only step left in Johnny Cueto's rehabilitation process is to pitch in an actual game.
The Dominican native, who has been on the disabled list with a strained lateral muscle since late-June, threw yet another successful bullpen session on Saturday, and depending on how he feels on Sunday, a decision could be made that will allow Cueto to pitch in a...