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COMMENTARY: My spin on Johnny’s spin

nate smith

NATE SMITH

The best way to positively spin Johnny Cueto’s latest injury to the very oblique muscle he’s injured twice previously in the last six months is to drop the spin.

Separately, it’s important to be honest about the impetus of the injury.

Clear as mud?

Cueto’s probably a little confused, too. About two years after adopting the Luis Tiant upper-body turn at the height of his windup, the Cincinnati Reds’ ace has emerged as the best pitcher on one of the best starting staffs in baseball.

Cueto was dominant last year, winning 19 games and posting career highs in starts (33,) and innings pitched (217,) while maintaining a sub-three ERA. He was consistent and durable and Reds fans always felt like their team had a better-than-fair shot anytime he toed the mound.

So, when Cueto pulled up lame in the first inning of his first start in last year’s playoffs, everybody was surprised, but were generally content, I think, to write the injury off as the kind of typical tough-luck break that always seems to befall Ohio sports teams.

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