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Ace pitcher Johnny Cueto out of Reds' rotation through NLCS

October 10, 2012|By Chuck Schilken
  • Cincinnati ace Johnny Cueto exits due to strained muscles in his side during the first inning of Reds' division series game against the San Francisco Giants.
Cincinnati ace Johnny Cueto exits due to strained muscles in his side during… (Thearon W. Henderson / Getty…)

Johnny Cueto was pulled from the Cincinnati Reds' division series roster Wednesday, hours before his scheduled start in Game 4 against the San Francisco Giants.

After throwing just eight pitches, Cueto left Game 1 of the series with pulled muscles in his side. Wednesday's move also means that the Reds will be without their 19-game winner for the National League championship series, should they make it that far.

“It was a very, very tough decision to make," General Manager Walt Jocketty said. "But our medical staff felt at best, Johnny would be able to pitch maybe one game in the next series if we get there, if he were available for that series.” 

Jocketty said the Reds, who lead the best-of-five division series, 2-1, filed the paperwork for the roster move just before 10 a.m. EDT and was granted the league's permission to make the switch at 11:30 a.m., less than five hours before the first pitch.

Right-hander Mike Leake, No. 5 in the team's rotation, will get the start in place of Cueto on Wednesday. Leake, who went 8-9 with a 4.58 ERA in 30 starts this season, had been told in advance that he might get the nod.

“It's quite a blow, but at the same time, you hope Leake steps up and pitches well,” Manager Dusty Baker said.


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