PRESS"> PRESS">

Reds send pitcher Villarreal back to minors

Right-hander had one rough start in place of the injured Johnny Cueto.

CINCINNATI (AP) -- The Reds have optioned right-hander Pedro Villarreal back to Triple-A Louisville after one rough start in place of the injured Johnny Cueto.

Cincinnati called up Henry Rodriguez before the opening game of a series Friday against the NL Central-leading Cardinals, giving them more infield depth for the series. Rodriguez batted .279 with three homers and 26 RBIs for Louisville.

Villarreal was called up Wednesday to make an emergency start after the Reds put Cueto on the disabled list with a strained muscle in the back of his pitching shoulder. Left-hander Tony Cingrani would have been the first choice, but didn't have enough rest after his last start for Louisville.

Villarreal gave up 10 hits and six runs in 3 2-3 innings of a 12-4 loss to Colorado.