Johnny Cueto’s last start was a masterful one against these same Pittsburgh Pirates, he will face tonight in game 2 of the four game series between the two teams.
Cueto has had plenty of time to stew over his last outing at PNC Park, but he’s buried that in the back of his mind.
The right-hander looks to keep his early season success rolling tonight as he opposes former Cincinnati Reds starter Edinson Volquez.
Cueto provided the Reds with another outstanding outing Wednesday, three-hitting the Pirates while striking out 12 in a 4-0 win. That support was more than he received in his first three outings combined.
The right-hander improved to 8-2 with a 1.29 ERA in his last 13 regular-season starts against Pittsburgh, though the Pirates touched him up for four runs and eight hits in just 3 1-3 innings of their 6-2 win in last season’s NL wild-card game, the last time Cueto faced them at PNC.
Manager Bryan Price was happy to see his starter put that outing behind him.
Volquez has been pretty good to start the early campaign of the season . After making his first appearance out of the bullpen April 3, he’s had three straight solid starts.
The right-hander won a career-high 17 games for Cincinnati in 2008, but elbow surgery the following season took its toll until he was eventually traded to San Diego in a deal for Mat Latos prior to the 2012 season.
Volquez, who signed a one-year, $5 million deal with Pittsburgh in the offseason, has made three starts against his former team, going 1-0 with a 3.93 ERA.
Jay Bruce had an RBI double in a two-run eighth that gave the Reds the lead Monday, but Andrew McCutchen tied the score with a solo homer in the bottom of the inning before Neil Walker’s single scored Russell Martin in the ninth to give the Pirates a 6-5 win.
Brandon Phillips, Todd Frazier and Devin Mesoraco finished with three hits and an RBI apiece for the Reds, who have dropped six of the last eight meetings, including the wild-card game.
First pitch is at 7:05pm, TV: FSN OHIO, and radio always on 700 WLW.