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Miley fans five over eight scoreless frames

The starting pitchers for Tuesday night's matchup between the D-backs and Reds will be padding their resumes for individual postseason honors while aiming to help their clubs reach the playoffs.

Reds ace Jonny Cueto has consistently been one of the league's hottest arms this season. He tied for the National League lead with 16 wins and his 2.47 ERA is the league's lowest. The right-hander is sixth in innings pitched (174.2) and 10th in WHIP with a 1.14 mark.

While his monster year has him contention in the NL Cy Young Award, Cueto is looking to bounce back from a start that would qualify as subpar by this season's standards.

The righty lasted just five innings, tossing 111 pitches while giving up two runs on five hits. The Reds went on to lose in Philadelphia on a walk-off single in the 11th inning, but Cueto received a no-decision.

The five-year veteran will toe the rubber against a remarkable rookie making a strong case for NL Rookie of Year honors.

Wade Miley is 14-8 with a 2.80 ERA and is coming off one his better outings, slinging eight shutout innings against the Marlins while allowing just four hits.

"He just trusts you and he goes with whatever you put [down]," D-backs catcher Wil Nieves said of Miley. "He just concentrates on hitting the spots. When you have a guy like that on the mound, pretty much he's going to be successful because there's no second-guessing and no worrying if it's the right or wrong pitch. He just throws it with conviction and it's fun catching him. When you have a pitcher like that, hitters feel uncomfortable and rushed."

Hitters have been far from comfortable facing Miley, who's win total and ERA lead all rookie starters, while his 151 innings rank third and his 109 strikeouts rank sixth.

But, as any Major Leaguer will say, the push for the playoffs is more important than any individual accolade, and with the D-backs still in the Wild Card hunt, the club knows it's crunch time.

"It's that time," Miley said. "We've got to strap it on and play, and we can't let games slip away right here right now."

Reds: Votto on verge of rehab games
It's the news Cincinnati has been waiting to hear for more than a month -- Joey Votto is set to continue playing baseball again. Just not in a Reds uniform yet.

Votto, who has been out of the Reds' lineup since July 16 after tearing the meniscus in his left knee, is slated to start a two-game rehab stint with Class A Dayton on Tuesday.

"I'm a little apprehensive, because I haven't played in such a long time," Votto said on Sunday. "Once I get going, I will feel fine."

Votto's first full workout with Dayton, initially scheduled for Monday, was cancelled due to inclement weather.

The former NL MVP began baseball activities again last weekend and hopes to return to the team for the three-game series in Houston beginning Aug. 31.

"We're hoping he will be ready some time next weekend, if everything goes well," said Reds manager Dusty Baker.

D-backs: Goldschmidt continues to answer call
First baseman Paul Goldschmidt has been in the lineup for 34 consecutive games, and the end isn't in sight.

"The way he takes care of himself, does he look tired to you?" D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "He's a little younger and I think he's good. I'm not saying I won't [rest him a day], but as of right now, no."

Goldschmidt hasn't missed a game since July 22 and hasn't seen a drop in the numbers department either.

In 86 at-bats in August, Goldschmidt is hitting .287 with three homers, six doubles and 13 RBIs, but its his defensive work that caught Gibson's eye.

"He seems like he's got a lot of energy, he's not dragging, he wants to do it," Gibson said. "He's religiously out there working on his movements that he has to duplicate within the game so he can be better, quicker and have more range."

Worth noting
• Dusty Baker on Monday became the seventh manager in Reds history with 400 wins.

• The D-backs are 2-3 against the Reds this season, but can still win back-to-back season series for the first time since 2001-03.

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