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Mike Leake's First Career Win

Back and forth.  That was the story of tonight's game at Great American Ball Park.  In a game reminiscent of the old NL West days, the Dodgers and Reds did battle.  After last night's 14-6 embarrassment the Dodgers handed the Reds, the question on my mind was, "Can they bounce back and take this series?"  Surprisingly, they did.

Granted, rookie starter Mike Leake didn't have a particularly amazing game, giving up 5 earned runs in 7 innings.  But he only walked one, had 5 strikeouts, and the most important stat: 1 win.  Leake surely isn't a Cy Young candidate, but considering at this time last year he was pitching college ball, his first 3 starts looked quite good.  And more importantly, he is improving.  Unlike Aaron Harang, who inspires nothing but puzzled anger for his seemingly never ending slump.  Harang is like buying the cool, expensive new video game system only to have it stop working after the warranty runs out.

Scott Rolen was the game-changer tonight, with a 2-run double in the 7th inning, giving the Reds the lead and giving Leake the W for the time being.  With solid innings from Arthur Rhodes and Francisco Cordero, the Reds took 2 of 3 from the Dodgers with an 8 to 5 win at GABP.  The victory gave Leake his first career win and the first win this season by a Reds starter.

One offensive glimmer came from Drew Stubbs, the Reds leadoff batter through most of the season was dropped to seventh in the batting order.  Stubbs went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run after going hitless in 20 straight at-bats.  Hopefully he'll continue to gain some confidence and become the leadoff hitter that Reds fans are hoping for.

The Reds now have a home series against the surprising San Diego Padres.  Hopefully the Reds can string together a little winning streak.

     - Mike Zimmerman

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