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Reds-Pirates: Cueto Leads Reds To Series Win

Daniel ClearyContributor IMay 4, 2009

The Reds entered the season knowing that the pitching staff would have to lead them in order for them to have the success that they have hoped for. 

So far this season the pitching has been as good as they could of expected.

Leading the staff today, was young Johnny Cueto who went eight innings of shutout baseball, allowing four hits with nine strikeouts sprinkled in. 

Most importantly, he showed some control and only walked one batter in the game. 

Arthur Rhodes came in the ninth inning to close the door shut on the third shutout in four games for the team, giving them a 4-0 win.  Rhodes also extended his own scoreless streak to nine-and-one-thirds innings on the season.

Cueto has taken the steps in his development stage that the Reds were surely hoping for at the beginning of the season.  So far, he has put up a 2-1 record with thirty-two-and-two-thirds innings pitched with 29 strikeouts and a 1.65 era.  His best stat of all is his WHIP: 1.04, putting him in the top five in baseball.

While the offense didn't need a big game with the way that Cueto was pitching,  Ramon Hernandez had himself a great day at the plate going 2-for-3 with 3 RBI in the game.

Joey Votto had a decent game, going 1-for-3 with a walk which lowered his batting average to .363. 

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Brandon Phillips came up with two hits on the day, bringing his batting average over the Mendoza linehe's now hitting .207 on the year. 

That leaves only Alex Gonzalez as the only starter with a batting average under .200.  He currently sits at .188 ,just one big day away from getting across that dreaded line.

Next up for the Reds is a series againts the Florida Marlins with ace Aaron Harrang and his 3.09 ERA up against Josh Johnson with a 2.60 ERA but and an impressive 1.04 WHIP. 

You have to think that his game is setting up to be a pitchers duel which is good for the RedsHarrang always pitches his best against the opposing team's best pitcher, so I expect a great game.

Hopefully, the bats show enough life to come up with a victory.