Mike Leake started the game for the Cincinnati Reds in their first attempt to return their record to .500 in longer than I can remember. It was his 3rd attempt for his 11th win, and things didn’t look promising when he walked the first batter.
However, he settled down. Leake allowed no runs in that first inning, and with the exception of 2 runs in the 3rd, the rest of his 6 innings were scoreless. He pitched 6 innings, allowed 2 runs, and left with his team having a 5-2 lead.
That lead was spread around the whole team, with Brandon Phillips driving in one run and scoring 2 more, and Miguel Cairo driving in one and scoring one. Drew Stubbs also went 3-3 and drove in a run. The other runs were driven in by Dave Sappelt and Edgar Renteria.
If this had been Dontrelle Willis starting, you know the bullpen would’ve coughed up that lead. But there were no blown saves tonight. It was the most complete, well put-together win I’ve seen the Reds have in a while. After Leake was pulled, Sam LeCure and Bill Bray held the lead for Francisco Cordero, who had a perfect 9th for the save.
The move improved the team’s record to .500 at 66-66. This is the first time since the beginning of July that they’ve been at .500. They are now 2.5 games behind the 2nd place St. Louis Cardinals.