Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Mat Latos pitched four and two-thirds of an inning allowing just three hits and fanning three batters in a rehab start for the Louisville Bats Friday night against the Columbus Clippers in Columbus, Ohio. The Bats went on to win the game by a score of 5-3.
Latos, 26, underwent surgery on his left knee during spring training and was on a limited pitch count of 75 pitches. He fell just a single out shy of qualifying for the win but lowered his earned run average to 2.03.
The right hander allowed one-out singles in both the first and second innings before recording strikeouts to end the inning.
Louisville gave Latos a three run lead in the third inning. Thomas Neal collected a one-out double before Felix Perez to put runners on the corners. The next batter, Chris Nelson, took a 2-0 pitch and smacked it over the right field fence for his third home run on the year.
After the Clippers were sent down in order in the third, Latos walked a batter in the fourth but got the next batter to fly out. He reached his pitch count in the fifth after giving up a double and walking his last batter on a close call. He threw a total of 80 pitches.
"I made it to 80 pitches without any forearm problems or anything in general," Latos said. "The next step is another one at about 90-100 pitches and then hopefully I'm good enough to make the big league club."
"I'm tired of sitting on the bench and not being able to play with the big league club," Latos said. "It sucks, but it's life and I've just got to do what I need to down here for a little bit and take some grenades in the trenches."