: BR Preview
: Game Notes
vs. Ted Lilly
|N. Hopper CF
||A. Soriano LF
|J. Keppinger SS
||R. Theriot SS
|K. Griffey RF
||D. Lee 1B
|B. Phillips 2B
||C. Floyd RF
|A. Dunn LF
||A. Ramirez 3B
|E. Encarnacion 3B
||M. DeRosa 2B
|J. Votto 1B
||J. Jones CF
|D. Ross C
||G. Soto C
|T. Shearn P
||T. Lilly P
Time for the Cubbies to take a big bite out of that .00027 winning-percentage-point lead the Brewers have built in the National League Central.
Lilly takes the mound on three days' rest following a well-pitched ND against the Cardinals. The lefty is 1-1 against the Reds this season, but in 18 IP, Lilly has allowed a mere 11 hits, striking out 24 and walking just 4.
As for the Reds starter...
When Rick Ankiel was implicated
in baseball's ongoing HGH mess and went from being MLB's Feel-Good Story of 2007 to just another suspect, 30-year-old righthander Tom Shearn shot to the top of the Feel-Good list.
In case you haven't heard them, the facts
Taken in the 29th round of the 1996 amateur draft by the Astros, the Columbus, Ohio-native toiled in the minors for a good, long time, eventually making it to AAA in 2002. Shearn pitched well in AAA in '02 before blowing out his arm, which required Tommy John surgery and caused him to miss all of 2003.
Houston released Shearn, and in November of '03, he signed with the Reds. He was still pitching in the Reds minor league system, at AAA Louisville, in late August of this year, when he was summoned to the big club to assume the roster spot of Kirk Saarloos
When Shearn took the phone call informing him of the promotion, he was living in a camper outside the Louisville ballpark, so he could save on rent. Of the call-up, Shearn said, "Even if it's only for one day, I can smile."
The aged rookie made his Major League debut on August 26th against Florida and is now 3-0, with wins over the Marlins, Mets, and last Thursday, the Brewers. He is the first Reds pitcher to begin his career 3-0 since Tom Browning back in 1985. (One reason for his 3-0 record: in Shearn's four big-league starts, the Reds have scored 15 first-inning runs.)
All told, an inspiring tale about the rewards of passion and commitment.
Now let's kick his ass back to Cincinnati.