“You don’t make it to the big leagues out of college if you’re not polished, which is why very few ever do it,” McCann said. “He’s got four pitches and knows how to use both sides of the plate. You have to hit your spots, and you have to add and subtract, and that’s what he does.”
Jocketty said the Reds first considered starting Leake at Class AA this season, but as spring training progressed, Class AAA Louisville seemed more likely if he did not make the major league club. Finally, at the end of spring training, he was chosen as the fifth starter.
“I wasn’t expecting anything until they told me where to go,” Leake said.
He smiled when asked to name the biggest hurdle to getting to the big leagues so quickly.
“My size, not having the typical 6-foot-4 body, 220,” he said. “I kind of had to do things differently than those type guys. That’s who I am.”