Tag:Mike Leake
Posted on: May 4, 2011 12:27 am
Edited on: May 4, 2011 12:27 am

NL Central rotations returning to normal

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Homer BaileyThe National League Central is slowly getting its pitchers back.

Milwaukee will get its first chance to see former Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke in the second game of the team's double header in Atlanta on Wednesday, while the Reds announced Homer Bailey and Johnny Cueto will return to the rotation this week.

Bailey, pictured, returns on Thursday, while Johnny Cueto will start Sunday at Wrigley Field against the Cubs. Cincinnati had planned on giving Cueto another rehab start before activating him from the disable list, but Mike Leake's clunker on Tuesday may have sped up Cueto's timetable.

Leake allowed seven runs on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings against the Astros on Tuesday and will likely be moved to the bullpen to serve as the long reliever, with Sam LeCure headed to Louisville in time for the Kentucky Derby.

"Coming out of spring training, [Leake] was going to be our long guy," Baker told reporters, including John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. "He performed well in those other guys' absence. Tonight was the first time he got whacked around in a while."

Bailey has looked good in his rehab starts, starting three games and allowing just one run on 11 hits in 16 2/3 innings, while striking out 14 and walking four. Cueto's made four starts for Triple-A Louisville, going 0-2 with a 6.28 ERA, allowing 10 earned runs (12 total) on 19 hits in 14 1/3 innings, striking out 13 and walking six.

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Posted on: April 29, 2011 4:24 pm
Edited on: April 29, 2011 4:53 pm

Leake pleads guilty to lesser charge

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Mike LeakeReds starter Mike Leake, arrested on theft charges earlier this month, plead guilty to a lesser charge of unauthorized use of property and will get 30 hours of community service and go into a diversion program, the Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay writes.

Leake explained his actions thusly (via video from FSOhio's Jim Day):

My side of the story is on April 2, I went in to purchase six shirts. They did not fit, wrong size. I proceeded to go to Macy's and exchange them on my own instead of talking to the clerk. I set six shirts down, got the correct sizes for myself, walked out and they stopped me. I see how boneheaded of a move it was, I was wrong and a sincerely apologize.

He called it a "serious lapse in judgement on my part."

Well, whatever you can get a judge to believe, I guess. It seems hard to believe a person would just think a store has a DIY exchange program, but if Cincinnati's judicial system buys it, that's all that matters.

Leake said he did have a credit card statement -- but no receipt -- proving he bought something at Macy's on April 2. When asked if it was the first time he had tried to return something in such a manner, he said, "not in this way."

Leake said he couldn't remember his exact thought process and why he tried to handle his own exchange, but he realizes the error of his ways. His community service will be figured out later, but will include work with a non-profit organization.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: April 21, 2011 4:54 pm

Leake wins first start since arrest

Reds fanBy C. Trent Rosecrans

Mike Leake made his first statements since his arrest on Monday, but only tangentially spoke about those charges of theft.

Instead, he talked about how important it was to get back on the mound on Thursday, when he picked up the victory in the Reds' 7-4 victory. Leake went seven innings, allowing four hits and three runs, striking out six and walking two.

"I'll be better once it's all done," Leake told reporters after the game. "But, right now, I've got to eat it and go out there and do what I can for the team. It was nice to go out there and erase some things and pitch."

There was a mixed reaction from the fans at Great American Ball Park. One sign in the stands said, "Mike Leake We Gave You The Bunt Sign Not The Steal Sign!" another asked Leake to steal the team a win. More meta hecklers wore Bengals helmets, noting the football team's reputation of mischief.

Leake acknowledge he was worried about how he'd be greeted on Thursday.

"A little bit," he said. "I was wondering if they were going to support me or not. For the most part, they were very nice."

Reds manager Dusty Baker said he was glad to see Leake react well.

"I had a hope and a prayer he'd respond," Baker told reporters, including the Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay. "You really don't know, especially when a guy's young like that. He was really hurting for a few days there. I'm sure he still does and still will. I'm glad he responded the way he did. He needed it. We needed it."

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Posted on: April 21, 2011 1:37 pm
Edited on: April 21, 2011 3:23 pm

Cards fans ready for Reds' Leake

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Mike Leake won't be pitching for the Reds this weekend in St. Louis, but he'll be seen in the stands.

St. Louis blog Joe Sports Fan is selling these shirts this weekend, and, well, they're just perfect.

Mike Leake

Bravo Matt Sebek and company. To order your shirt for when the Reds come to your town, you can send an e-mail to Matt at matt@joesportsfan.com or tweet him @MattSebek.

The Reds-Cardinals rivalry was amped up last season after Brandon Phillips called the Cardinals "whiny little bitches" and then set off a fight, where Johnny Cueto kicked Jason LaRue in the head. The two teams haven't come to fisticuffs since then, but there are still plenty of hard feelings on both sides. Cueto is currently on the disabled list and won't be in St. Louis, by the way, and LaRue retired after suffering a concussion in the brawl.

Leake is making his first post-arrest start today in Cincinnati, where the Diamondbacks picketed runs off of him in each of the first two innings before he got off clean in the third.

UPDATE: Leake allowed four hits and three runs, striking out six and walking two, improving to 3-0 on the season with Cincinnati's 7-4 victory over the Diamondbacks.

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Posted on: April 19, 2011 2:31 pm
Edited on: April 19, 2011 4:52 pm

Reds' Leake to make his scheduled start Thursday

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Mike Leake

Mike Leake will make his scheduled start on Thursday, even though the Reds did have second thoughts following his Monday arrest on theft charges.

"There was consideration," Reds manager Dusty Baker told reporters, including MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. "We talked about how he felt and could he handle the pressure of it. He said, 'yeah.' Sometimes in times of trouble, it's easier to go to work than not go to work."

Earlier on Tuesday, Leake appeared in court Tuesday and requested to be put in a diversionary program that would have his record wiped clean, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports.

The Reds started was arrested on Monday after cameras caught him stealing $59.98 worth of shirts at a downtown Macy's store in Cincinnati. According to the newspaper, Leake had $250 in cash, two Visas and a Master Card on him when he was arrested.

If Leake is approved for the diversion program, he would have to admit guilt and pay the program fee of $200. He would have to check in monthly over a period of three to six months. He would also likely have to take classes to address the crime, in this case theft, and could also be made to serve community service and require counseling.

Leake has yet to speak to the media, but is expected to speak following Thursday's game against the Diamondbacks.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: April 18, 2011 4:25 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 7:38 pm

Reds' starting pitcher Leake arrested for theft

By Matt Snyder

Mike Leake has been arrested by Cincinnati police on suspicion of theft. (Cincinnati.com )

Leake, 23, is alleged to have taken six American Rag shirts valued at $59.88 total from Macy's department store in Cincinnati. Security cameras reportedly caught him removing tags from several shirts and attemping to leave the store without paying for them. He was arrested just two hours before the Reds pitchers were expected to arrive at Great American Ball Park to ready for a game against the Pirates Monday night.

He has been booked into the Hamilton County Justice Center. If convicted of theft, the sentence would be a misdemeanor that carried a maximum of 180 days in jail. Leake will make $425,000 this season as a member of the Cincinnati Reds.

Leake was the eighth overall pick in the 2009 draft and went directly to the majors for the start of the 2010 season. He was the 21st player to do so since 1965. He got out to a hot start but cooled later in the season, ending 8-4 with a 4.23 ERA. With a few injuries to expected starting pitchers, he has rejoined the rotation for this season. He's 2-0 with a 5.40 ERA in three starts.

Considering the incident just happened a few hours ago, it's hard to say how this event will affect his standing with the team.

There is a copy of the police report available on Cincinnati.com -- where Leake said the address of his employer is "Reds Stadium."

The Reds have released the following statement:

"On behalf of the Cincinnati Reds organization, at this time we are advised to not publicly address this matter because of the pending legal proceedings. However, we do not condone behavior of the type alleged, which is wholly inconsistent with the principles of this organization and our community and is detrimental to the positive direction we seek to follow. When the legal process has been completed, we will handle this matter internally."

Also, there's been a statement released on behalf of Leake. Here it is:

"Today, Mike Leake was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of theft from the Macy’s store downtown. Right now, he has been advised by his attorney to offer no further statements on this matter. This case will proceed in the justice system, where Mike’s story will be told. Until that time, there will be nothing further from Mike on this episode until the court proceedings have concluded. However, Mike wishes to apologize to his family, the fans, Mr. Castellini, [general manager] Walt [Jocketty], [manager] Dusty [Baker], his teammates and the entire Reds organization for this distraction."

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Category: MLB
Posted on: April 6, 2011 10:24 am
Edited on: April 6, 2011 5:10 pm

Pepper: Royal excitement


By C. Trent Rosecrans

Are the Royals baseball's most exciting team?

Well, through five games they are, that's for sure. All four of the Royals' victories this season have come in their final at-bat. Tuesday's walk-off winner was Melky Cabrera's 12th-inning RBI single for a 7-6 victory over the White Sox.

In the team's lone loss, on opening day, the Royals' Alex Gordon was just feet short of a walk-off homer in a 4-2 loss to the Angels last Thursday.

"All of a sudden, you just expect us to win and that's it," Royals infielder Chris Getz told MLB.com . "There are plenty of doubters out there, no one's giving us much of a chance, but what do we have to lose? We've got that good feeling and we'll just ride it out."

The Royals have had a different hero each night. In their first win, Kila Ka'aihue led off the ninth inning with a homer to break a tie, the next day the Royals scored two in the eighth inning, capped by Getz's RBI single. The Royals then used a three-run walk-off homer by Matt Treanor (above) in the 13th to beat the Angels in the series finale.

With four victories in their final at-bat, the Royals may not be the best team in 2011, but they're worth sticking around to watch.

Last season the Braves lead the big leagues with 25 victories in their final at-bat.

SEARCHING FOR A WIN -- Another day, another Red Sox loss. Will the Red Sox go winless this season and will the Reds go undefeated? Eye on Baseball's Matt Snyder joins blog favorite Lauren Shehadi with the answers (which, well, are both 'no.')

GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS -- Ubaldo Jimenez's thumb is better -- but may not be good enough to allow him to make his start Friday in Pittsburgh. The Rockies' right-hander is expected to throw a bullpen today to test the cuticle injury on his right thumb. If Jimenez can't start, Jorge De La Rosa would start in his spot. De La Rosa will be on regular rest following Sunday's snow-out. [MLB.com ]

SHIFT BE A-GONE -- Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said putting three men on the right side of the infield has never been an effective strategy against him. Last season he had more singles to left field than right. The Indians, though, had good luck with the shift on Tuesday. The Indians used the shift and Gonzalez was 0 for 4 with two groundouts to the right side. [WEEI.com ]

COSTLY ERROR -- Jayson Werth's error was one of several events that led to the Nationals' 3-2 loss to the Marlins on Tuesday. [CSNWashington.com ]

A TRADITION LIKE NO OTHER -- I absolutely love the baseball tradition of giving a guy the silent treatment after his first homer in the big leagues. Tuesday's victim was the Angels' Hank Conger. [Press-Enterprise ]

WELCOME HOME -- Padres starter Aaron Harang looked like his old self in a victory over the Giants on Tuesday. In his first season with his hometown Padres, Harang certainly looked comfortable at Petco Park. [San Diego Union-Tribune ]

CALLED SHOT -- Toronto's Yunel Escobar told teammates Carlos Villanueva and Edwin Encarnacion the team would come back to win, even though they were down 5-0 in the middle of Tuesday's game against the A's. After a four-run sixth inning to tie the game, Escobar delivered on his promise with a two-run homer in the 10th to give Toronto the win. [MLB.com ]

NO MINORS FOR LEAKE -- Reds manager Dusty Baker said sending starter Mike Leake was never an option, even though it appeared that Leake made the team out of spring only because of the injuries to Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey. Baker said Leake was overthrowing in the spring and looked like the guy who started the season 6-1 with a 3.53 ERA in Tuesday's win over the Astros. Leake, the Reds' first-round pick in 2009 made the big league rotation out of spring training last season, bypassing the minors altogether.  [Cincinnati Enquirer ]

BELT MAY BE DEMOTED -- When Cody Ross returns to the Giants' lineup, rookie first baseman Brandon Belt could be the odd man out in San Francisco. The Giants say they will base their decision on Belt's play, but sending Belt down would keep the status quo. With Ross back in right field, Aubrey Huff could move back to first. Or if the team decides to keep Belt, Huff would move to left and would make Pat Burrell a bench player. Also, putting Belt in the minors for more than 20 days would keep him from accruing a full year of service time and delay his free agency a year. [FOXSports.com ]

NO FEUD -- Former Met Pedro Feliciano said he was going to strike out Ike Davis when the Yankees face the Mets next month. Davis was uninterested in escalating the "feud."

Davis said it was Feliciano's job to strike him out, and well, last season he struck out 138 times, so "it's not that tough of a feat." [New York Post ]

BANDWAGON ROOM -- Attendance at Yankee Stadium through the first four games of the season is down about 8,000 fans per game. [ESPNNewYork.com ]

YANKS AREN'T ALONE -- As we mentioned the other day, it's not just Yankee Stadium that has its share of empty seats -- Wrigley Field has plenty of seats available, even for the seagulls. [Chicago Sun-Times ]

ON THE OTHER HAND -- Blue Jays fans are excited for their team in Toronto. [Slam! Sports ]

SUNSHINE BALL -- Is there any hope for baseball in Florida past March? [MASNSports.com ]

ROLAIDS ALERT -- The folks over at Big League Stew take a look at the top 10 new concessions at MLB parks this season. 

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Posted on: April 5, 2011 11:24 pm

Six young arms impress on Tuesday

By Matt Snyder

One of my favorite things early in the season is when we get to the fourth and fifth games for each team -- because it's often the first look we get in the new campaign at a bevy of young starting pitchers. Whether the pitcher is making his debut, his first major-league start, or entering a season where he's expected to take a big step forward, it's always interesting to see how he fares. There were many on impressive display Tuesday. Let's take a look, remembering this snapshot excludes already-established stars like Clayton Kershaw and Yovani Gallardo (and obviously excludes stink-bomb outings like we saw from Madison Bumgarner and Luke Hochevar).

Andrew Cashner, Cubs. He'd never made a major-league start until Tuesday and I still noticed scouting types on Twitter saying he's still best suited as a reliever, but Cashner looked pretty solid before his injury . A bullpen meltdown prevented him from getting the victory, but only three baserunners and one run were given up through 5 1/3 innings. Perhaps most impressive was his efficiency, as he only threw 72 pitches.

Josh Tomlin, Indians. The 26-year-old is still a rookie despite making 12 starts last season and he handcuffed the Red Sox's vaunted offense. He worked seven innings, only giving up three hits and one run.

Mike Leake, Reds. After a huge start -- one where he completely bypassed the minor leagues -- Leake finished 2010 by going 3-4 with a 6.47 ERA after the first week of June. He would have began this season in the minors had it not been for injuries to Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey, in all likelihood. Tuesday, Leake came out and threw six innings, only letting the Astros collect three hits, two walks and two earned runs. He got the "W" as the Reds moved to 4-0.

Michael Pineda, Mariners. Much discussion centered on if the Mariners should have let this prospect start the season in the majors, due to service time concerns. In terms of what he can do on the hill, there was no question he belonged. He showed it against a very potent Texas offense Tuesday. He took the loss, but threw six innings and held the Rangers to three earned runs. He struck out four, only walked one and showed his power pitching skills on several occasions. Keep an eye on this one.

Alexi Ogando, Rangers. With much of the attention on his counterpart, Ogando went out and gave the Rangers six shutout innings. The 27-year-old had 44 outings last season, but this marked his first career start in the bigs. He's ticketed back to the bullpen when Tommy Hunter returns from injury, but string a few more of these together and it's a really problem in Texas.

Jhoulys Chacin, Rockies. The 23-year-old has shown brief flashes of brilliance in his early career, but hasn't had the chance to turn national heads yet. Tuesday against the Dodgers -- a team which just took three of four from the defending champs -- Chacin tossed seven shutout innings. He struck out four and outdueled Clayton Kershaw.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com