The Cincinnati Reds activated Johnny Cueto from the disabled list Sunday and have him slated to start against the Milwaukee Brewers, reports the team's Assistant Director of Media Relations Jamie Ramsey.
Cueto was placed on the disabled list June 6 with a sore muscle behind his pitching shoulder. The soreness appeared to be a recurrence of an earlier injury that kept Cueto out for a month between April and May. The latest DL stint was backdated, with Sunday being the earliest he was eligible to return to the team.
Cueto, 27, has been excellent when he has pitched, however. In 2013 he has a 2.17 ERA and 0.884 WHIP over six starts. He is also matching his career high of an 8.2 strikeouts per nine innings, a pace he has not achieved since his rookie year in 2008. His last start before being placed on the DL was a gem as he threw eight one-hit innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Reds announced that Pedro Villarreal was optioned to make room for Cueto on the roster. Villarreal made one start against the Colorado Rockies on June 5 and allowed six earned runs over 3⅔ innings. He has not pitched since that outing.
There were rumors that the Reds might send down prized prospect Tony Cingrani, who has looked very good over seven starts this season. However, it appears they will choose to instead place him in a bullpen role and keep him on the big league roster.