Johnny Cueto knows that he may not be able to pitch in the All-Star Game because of the way his next two starts line up heading into the break.
Reds manager Bryan Price said Monday that he doesn't think it would make sense for Cueto to pitch in the Midsummer Classic just two days after making what would be his next start after Tuesday, on Sunday against the Pirates.
"It doesn't bother me, because [Price and the Reds coaching staff] are the ones that know what I'm going to do, what's going to happen," Cueto said through interpreter Tomas Vera on Monday. "Honestly, yes, I'd like to pitch in the All-Star Game; it's my first time, so of course, I would like to pitch."
But just because he might not be able to take the mound at Target Field next week, that doesn't change the tall order that awaits Cueto's opponents in the first game of a day-night doubleheader on Tuesday.
Cueto, who is second in the National League with a 1.99 ERA and 130 strikeouts, will start in a makeup of an April 28 rainout against the Cubs. The right-hander has dominated the Cubs in his last six starts against them, going 4-0 with a 0.92 ERA (four earned runs in 39 innings pitched).
Cueto is scheduled to be opposed by Chicago left-hander Travis Wood. Wood continues to struggle on the road, going into Tuesday's start with a 4-4 record away from Wrigley Field, along with a 6.16 ERA. At home, he's 3-2 with a 3.08 ERA.
Though his record doesn't reflect it, Wood has pitched fairly well against the Reds in his career. He's 1-4 with a 3.52 ERA in seven career starts against his former club, holding Cincinnati batters to a .231 average against him.
The southpaw has had control problems as of late, having given up nine runs on 18 hits while walking 12 in his last 15 innings.
For the nightcap, the Reds called up left-hander David Holmberg from Triple-A Louisville. Holmberg will be making his second career Major League start, and his debut for Cincinnati. He went 0-4 with a 5.28 ERA in 10 starts for Louisville, but since coming off the disabled list on June 11 following a left shoulder injury, he posted a 1.71 ERA in five games.
The Cubs will counter with fellow lefty Tsuyoshi Wada, who will be making his Major League debut. Wada pitched well for Triple-A Iowa, going 9-5 with a 2.66 ERA in 17 appearances (16 starts), striking out 105 in 101 2/3 innings. Wada was in the Orioles' system from 2012-13, and had Tommy John surgery in May 2012.
"In the spring, he was elevated a little bit, outside of the zone, and he's been pitching down in the zone, both sides of the plate, and has been mixing his pitches and been very effective, which is good to hear," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said of Wada.
Cubs: Beeler, Hendricks to start Wednesday and Thursday
With rain in the forecast for Monday and Tuesday in Cincinnati, the Cubs waited until after Monday's series opener to announce their starters for the final two games of the five-game series against the Reds, just in case Monday's game was postponed.
Though there was a 21-minute rain delay that stopped play, the game resumed and was completed with the Reds winning, 9-3.
After trading Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to the A's, Chicago had to fill its spots in the rotation, announcing that right-handers Dallas Beeler and Kyle Hendricks would start Wednesday and Thursday, respectively.
Beeler made his big league debut earlier this season for Chicago, being called up from Triple-A Iowa to start the first game of a doubleheader against the Nationals on June 28. He tossed six innings and allowed an unearned run on four hits, walking three and striking out six.
Hendricks was pulled from his start for Triple-A Iowa after two innings on Sunday, and was 10-5 with a 3.59 ERA in 17 starts in Triple-A.
Reds: Votto undergoes tests on knee, Bruce plays first for first time
First baseman Joey Votto was not in the starting lineup for the second consecutive game on Monday and the fourth time since returning from the disabled list on June 10. The left quad strain that put him on the DL appears to be bothering him more as of late, and he underwent tests with Dr. Tim Kremchek on Monday.
"It's getting more and more uncomfortable to play with to the point where it's very difficult for him to be able to compete," Price said. "We're just verifying that the situation hasn't gotten worse."
Jay Bruce started at first base for the first time in his professional career in Monday's series opener against the Cubs.
"I don't think you'll see Jay at first base often. It does allow us to utilize our bench players a little bit more," Price said. "We have guys here that are playing part time but we'd like to play more."
• Tuesday's twin bill will be the third for the Cubs this season (April 16 against the Yankees in New York, June 28 against the Nationals at Wrigley Field). It will be the second for the Reds (May 15 against the Padres at Great American Ball Park).
• Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro have struggled against Cueto. Rizzo is 1-for-12 (.083) with a double and Castro is 7-for-30 (.233) with a double and a triple.
• Todd Frazier is 6-for-17 (.353) with two home runs and six RBIs in his career against Wood. Devin Mesoraco is 3-for-8 (.375) against the left-hander. Bruce has homered twice against Wood, but is 4-for-17 (.235) against him overall. Zack Cozart has really struggled with Wood, going 2-for-19 (.105) with nine strikeouts.
Manny Randhawa is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.