Johnny Cueto leaves start with forearm tightness

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Johnny Cueto was originally scheduled to throw four innings against the Rangers this afternoon, but he was pulled from his start after just two innings due to forearm tightness.

It’s easy for your imagination to run wild when a pitcher comes down with forearm tightness, but Reds head trainer Paul Lessard told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com that Cueto exited the game for precautionary reasons.

“He had tightness in his mid-forearm, not the elbow, which is good. Rather than keep sending him out there, we set him down so it doesn’t turn into anything. It was more precautionary than anything else.”

The injury isn’t believed to be serious, but Cueto will be checked out by Reds medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek tomorrow.

Cueto, 25, is 32-32 with a 4.27 ERA over his first 92 major league starts, including a career-best 12 wins and 3.64 ERA last season. The Reds and Cueto avoided arbitration in January by agreeing to a four-year, $27 million contract with a club option for 2015.

Kendrys Morales pitched a scoreless inning Sunday

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Nothing went right for the Blue Jays this weekend. The club was swept in a four-game series against the Athletics, including a 9-2 loss on Sunday. Not wanting to burn out his bullpen in a lopsided game — and perhaps thinking about the general entertainment value involved — Blue Jays manager John Gibbons decided to send designated hitter Kendrys Morales out to pitch the ninth inning. And in typical baseball fashion, he saw better results than some of the dudes who do this all the time.

Morales, who actually pitched in Cuba nearly 20 years ago, worked around a walk for a scoreless inning. He induced three fly outs and topped out at 87.4 mph on his fastball, per Brooks Baseball. He received a standing ovation on the way back to the dugout. Morales hasn’t been hearing that sort of thing for his contributions with the bat recently.

Morales, 34, is batting just .163/.248/.279 with three home runs through 32 games this season. There’s been some understandable clamoring for top prospect Vladmir Guerrero, Jr. to cut into his at-bats. For his part, Morales has been doing everything he can to break out of his slumber at the plate, including ditching the glasses he started wearing during spring training. Hey, whatever works. Morales also had two of Toronto’s four hits on Sunday.

On the heels of Morales’ first MLB appearance on the mound, it feels rather appropriate that the Blue Jays will get their first look at Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — at least as a hitter — beginning on Tuesday.