This is the most expected surprise I've gotten from sports. Johnny Cueto of the Cinncinatti Reds is the next Pedro Martinez, but better. Quote me. If you look at him on paper, he is Pedro...at this point in his career. At 5'10'' and 183 pounds he has the same physical build as Peety and in his start on March 6th he was clocked at 97 miles per hour. This kid is 22, throwing 97...AND he looks like Pedro. Why isn't anybody talking about this kid.
Side Note 1: Johnny Cueto is only owned in 9.1% of ESPN Fantasy leagues.
Side Note 2: I have him in all 6 of my leagues, that's 100%.
Cueto is going to be the Reds #3 starter behind Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo in 2008. There isn't too much competition in the Cinci rotation so his job won't be in jeopardy if he can be consistant all year; which he should be able to barring an injury. I believe that if he can get 35 starts this year he can win 17 of those with a very underrated Reds offense who will be led by 3 returning 90+ RBI guys in Adam Dunn(also on my fantasy team), Brandon Phillips and Ken Griffey Junior (cough).
In Cueto's last 4 starts there has only been one outing where he allowed more than 2 runs, and he only did that once. Cueto has only let up a combined 7ER in 11.2 IP in that same time frame. Now, i admit the numbers don't look mind-blowing, but he let up 5 of the 7 runs in his only bad outing of the spring. He threw shut-outs of 3 and 4 innings on March 6 and 12th, respectivly. This guy has dominated everyone he's faced this year.
The only thing that can hurt Cueto is his coach. Dusty Baker has a reputation for blowing out young arms. He did it with Mark Prior and Kerry Wood, who were pretty well sized young pitchers. Cueto weighs 185 pounds, he's not that big, the Reds need to have someone spot start here and there to give Cueto a few breaks throughout the year, if they do, they won't run the risk of burning out a potenial Rookie of the Year contender by the time September comes around...
Side Note 3: Since I've started writing this, Cueto's % owned went up .3%, maybe people are catching on.
Let's Go Cueto