Johnny Cueto allowed nothing more than Justin Upton's solo homer in seven innings Thursday, striking out 10 in an overpowering debut while leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The 22-year-old pitcher threw his 96 mph fastball right by hitters who had never seen it, finishing them off with a hard slider or changeup. Pitching in a steady rain, the right-hander struck out eight of his first 13 batters.
His 10 strikeouts were the most by a Reds pitcher in his big league debut since 1900, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The only glaring mistake: Upton led off the sixth with a homer. That was the only hit by a team that batted an NL-low .250 last season. Arizona's Alex Romero had a sacrifice fly in the eighth, after reliever David Weathers walked the bases loaded.