Leake took an unfortunate step back last season as the Reds' fifth starter.
After skipping the minors entirely, Leake worked himself to a 20-13 record with a 4.03 ERA, a 1.32 WHIP and ratios of 6.1 K/9, 2.6 BB/9 and 2.4 K/BB (per baseball-reference.com).
Though his first two seasons worth of work were impressive, the fact that he progressed between his rookie and sophomore seasons is more impressive and speaks to his upside as a pitcher.
While 2012 was supposed to be another step toward the front of the rotation for Leake, his season wound up marled with disappointment.
In 30 starts last season, Leake compiled an 8-9 record with a 4.58 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP to go along with ratios of 5.8 K/9, 2.1 BB/9 and 2.83 K/BB.
Unfortunately for Leake, all of those measurements signify a step back from his 2011 season.
Leake is currently battling Aroldis Chapman for the fifth spot in the Reds' starting rotation and may be fighting to stay in Cincinnati period.
If Leake doesn't make the Reds' rotation then he'll likely be demoted to Triple-A Louisville.
Barring a blow-up for Chapman or an injury to one of the team's five starters, the Reds could elect to trade Leake during the season due to a wealth of pitching talent ready to hit the majors in 2014 (see: Daniel Corcino, Tony Cingrani and Robert Stephenson).