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Reds 4, Indians 0: Leake, dingers batter Kluber, Cleveland

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Goodyear Ballpark is Cincinnati's for the day.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game

Mike Leake has casually gone 53-42 with a 3.92 ERA in 891.2 IP for the Cincinnati Reds during his 5 years since being drafted 8th overall out of Arizona State, and while that's all been gravy as the team's primary 4th or 5th starter, he's going to be asked for much more in 2015.  So far this spring, he's made the case that he can answer that bell, and today he made it through 4 IP for the first time in yet another scoreless start.  Leake struck out 3, walked one, and allowed just a pair of hits on his day, and that was good enough to best Cleveland Indians starter and reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber in the mythical matchup between two pitchers that never actually happens but gets spoken of by broadcasters on the regular.  Have a JNMHSotG, Mike, and keep up the good work.  With Homer Bailey out for awhile, the Reds are going to need it.

Honorable Mentions are due to:  Kris Negron, who booped a dinger as part of a 2 hit, 2 run day; Todd Frazier, who booped a lengthy dinger; Billy Hamilton, who had an RBI single and his first stolen base of the spring; Steve Selsky, who was too selsky for a double and therefore tripled; and Tony Cingrani, who responded to his relegation to the bullpen by tossing a pair of perfect innings with 3 strikeouts.

Key Plays

  • Frazier popped the top on the scoring in this one in the Top of the 2nd, tagging a meatball from Cleveland ace Corey Kluber way, way over the LF fence for a solo dinger - his first of the spring.  Reds led, 1-0.
  • Negron followed his 3 for 4 day yesterday with a solo dinger of his own in the Top of the 3rd - also off Kluber - and after Skip Schumaker doubled two batters later, he scored on a wild pitch with Devin Mesoraco at the plate.  Reds led, 3-0.
  • Sparkpluggy Negron was at it again in the Top of the 5th, as he singled, moved all the way to 3B when an attempt to pick him off went awry, and scored on a single from Billy Hamilton.  The pitching powered things from there for both teams, and that was all the scoring on the day.  Reds win, 4-0!
Tony Graphanino

Other Notes

  • Both Seth Mejias-Brean and Steve Selsky got their first PAs in a big league game today.  Selsky tripled, but you already knew that because you read the Honorable Mentions, didn't you?
  • Burke Badenhop finally had a solid outing, tossing a perfect 7th with a K and a pair of vintage badenhoppers to infielders.
  • The Reds wore green hats today for National Guinness is Sold Out of Every Liquor Store Day.
  • Cincinnati was the away team in Goodyear today, but they'll switch dugouts to host the Chicago White Sox tomorrow afternoon.  Jason Marquis will continue his quest to make the Reds rotation, and he'll be opposed on the mound by Jose Quintana.  Brennan Boesch will probably whackadinger.
  • Tunes.