The American League’s best just got better.
The Kansas City Royals traded pitchers Brandon Finnegan, John Lamb, and Cody Reed to the Cincinnati Reds for Johnny Cueto. Finnegan owns a 3-0 record with a 2.96 ERA in the bigs this season. Reed and Lamb head from Kansas City’s system to Cincinnati’s minor-league organization.
Cueto (the guy from the Dominican Republic with a big right arm and not Kuato, that guy from Mars who lives on another man’s stomach) owns a 7-6 record with a 2.62 ERA as Cincinnati’s ace. His numbers likely improve as he moves from a hitter’s park to a pitcher’s park, and from a below-.500 club to the best team in the American League. The Royals, winning without a true ace, now appear intent on capturing the World Series crown that they played a game away from winning last season.
Looking at Cueto’s starts since the beginning of 2014, Breitbart Sports’ John Pudner noted that “the Reds would have won 16.36 fewer games (14.64 of 49) if a replacement player took Cueto’s part.” Pudner cited this ability to almost single-handedly (his right hand) turn losses into wins in naming Cueto the best pitcher in baseball.