National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, September 29th
(All times eastern)
Cincinnati Reds (95-62) at Pittsburgh Pirates (76-81), 7:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Cincinnati - Mike Leake (8-9, 4.73)
Pittsburgh - Kyle McPherson (0-2, 3.54)
(Sports Network) - Right-hander Mike Leake gets a chance to follow up on
history Saturday night when the Cincinnati Reds return to PNC Park for the
second of three straight games with the host Pittsburgh Pirates.
Leake's colleague in the Reds' rotation, Homer Bailey, opened the series in
style on Friday night, tossing the first Cincinnati no-hitter in 24 years to
give the visitors a 1-0 victory.
Bailey equaled a modern-day major league record by throwing the seventh no-
hitter this season. There were also seven no-hitters hurled in 1990 and 1991.
Three of the no-hitters this year were perfect games.
Alex Presley popped out to second baseman Brandon Phillips in short right-
center field to end the game. Once Phillips squeezed Presley's pop up, Bailey
raised both arms in the air and shared a hug with catcher Ryan Hanigan before
the rest of his teammates mobbed him near the pitcher's mound. Bronson Arroyo
gave his teammate a celebratory shower of Gatorade.
It was the 15th no-hitter in Reds history and first since Tom Browning's
perfect game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sept. 16, 1988.
Bailey is the first Reds right-hander to throw a no-hitter since Hall of Famer
Tom Seaver on June 16, 1978 against St. Louis. The 26-year-old improved to 5-0
with a 1.19 earned run average in six career starts at PNC Park.
Not it is Leake's turn and the 24-year-old is 2-3 in 10 career starts against
the Pirates with a 3.50 ERA in 64 1/3 innings.
He was a 5-3 winner in his last meeting with Pittsburgh on Sept. 11, when he
tossed seven innings and allowed three runs on nine hits while walking one and
striking out three.
He's won four of his last six decisions since Aug. 15, when he pitched the
second of his two career complete games in a 6-1 defeat of the New York Mets.
The Reds are 6-4 in the last 10 games he's pitched.
The Pirates counter with rookie righty Kyle McPherson, who makes his 10th try
at a first major-league win.
The 24-year-old Alabama native was 0-0 with a 1.54 ERA across 11 2/3 innings
while beginning his career with seven straight relief appearances, but has
since dropped two decisions in his first two starts.
In consecutive losses to Milwaukee and the New York Mets, McPherson has
allowed 11 hits and six runs in 8 2/3 innings while walking four batters and
striking out five.
He tossed two innings and allowed a run on two hits in one stint against
Cincinnati in the Sept. 11 game won by Leake.
The Pirates are winless in the nine games he's pitched.
Bailey's no-hitter notched the Pirates' 20th straight non-winning season. They
are just 13-34 since Aug. 8 and being contenders for first place in the NL
Central earlier in the season.
The Reds won nine of the initial 15 games between the teams in 2012, including
a sweep of a three-game set in Cincinnati from Sept. 10-12.
09/29 10:29:33 ET