CINCINNATI (AP) — Johnny Cueto got an extra day of rest before he tries to extend his amazing streak of starts.
The game between the San Diego Padres and Cincinnati Reds was postponed because of rain on Wednesday night and rescheduled as part of a doubleheader on Thursday. They will play a regularly scheduled game at 12:35 p.m. EDT followed by a makeup game at 6:10 p.m.
Ian Kennedy (2-4) will face Cueto (3-2) in the first game. Tyson Ross (4-3) will start the second game for San Diego. The Reds hadn’t decided on their starter.
For Cueto, it’s a chance to add to a rare streak of season-starting domination.
Cueto has 68 strikeouts in his first eight starts, the most by any Reds pitcher since 1900. He’s the first major leaguer to open the season with at least seven innings and two or fewer runs allowed in each of his first eight starts since the Dodgers’ Fernando Valenzuela did it in 1981, according to STATS.
“I’m amazed and, yet, not surprised,” manager Bryan Price said. “I’ve talked with Johnny before in the past about empty pitches, pitches that were thrown that didn’t really serve a purpose — the high fastball or a slider that misses way off the plate — that doesn’t serve any value.
“He has thrown so few of those pitches this year. He’s around the plate with everything. When he’s not, he’s teasing the hitter just off the plate or just below the zone or just above the zone. As much as we’ve talked about the potential concern for number of innings, he’s quite pitch efficient.”
And he’ll have an extra day of rest because of the weather.
It was the ninth postponement in Great American Ball Park’s history since 2003 and the second this season. The Reds have had eight rain delays, two postponements and one suspended game this season in Cincinnati.
Outfielder Carlos Quentin wasn’t going to be in the Padres’ lineup as manager Bud Black eases him back in. Quentin was activated before the series opener on Tuesday after missing the first 39 games with a bruised left knee, injured while diving for a ball during spring training.
Quentin went 3 for 18 during a minor league rehab stint and was 0 for 3 with a walk in his return. Black planned to play him on Thursday.
San Diego’s offense ranked last in the league with a .222 average and 118 runs. The Padres are hopeful that with Quentin back and third baseman Chase Headley finally healthy, their offense can pick up. Headley returned from the disabled list last Saturday after recovering from a strained right calf and has homered twice.
Headley’s solo shot in the ninth inning off a 99 mph fastball from Aroldis Chapman gave the Padres a 2-1 win in the series opener.
NOTES: The Padres haven’t won a series on the road this season. … Major League Baseball has made a scoring change from San Diego’s 4-0 loss to Washington on April 26, taking a hit away from Jayson Werth and giving Jedd Gyorko an error. That takes two earned runs away from Padres starter Andrew Cashner, lowering his ERA to 2.35. … Price said C Devin Mesoraco, on a rehab assignment recovering from a strained hamstring, will play a couple more games before the Reds will consider activating him. He began the assignment Tuesday night with Triple-A Louisville.
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