I guess for me, it boils down to the question, "Mike Leake is the _______ best pitcher in baseball."
And when I say best, to me that question is asking, if healthy (lets assume reasonable health for guys, feel free to knock chronically injured guys down a notch), would you have pitcher X or pitcher Y start a winner-take-all game for you.
I'm fairly confident (that to date) there are at least 60 more guys in baseball I'd rather take the hill in a big game than Leake, which puts him in the #3 starter range. But if the winner-take-all game was tonight, and all pitchers were healthy, Leake would be my 5th option out of the Reds starters. Yet, I'm still a big fan of his.
That's not me trying to slight him, that's just me interjecting my opinion into a thread that is raising the question if he is the BEST of all the starting pitchers for the Reds.