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Cincinnati Reds: 1st round pick set to make return

Robert Stephenson is returning to the big leagues. 

The Cincinnati Reds announced Tuesday that Stephenson, their first-round draft pick in 2011, will start Wednesday afternoon against the Mets in New York. 

Stephenson, a 6-foot-3, 215-pound right-hander from Martinez, Calif., has been on a roll for Triple-A Louisville since June 25. 

He is 6-0 with a 1.23 ERA in his last seven starts, allowing only six earned runs while striking out 55 in 44 innings. 

Stephenson leads the International League with 11 wins and opponents’ batting average (.184). His 135 strikeouts are second. 

This will be the third season in a row in which Stephenson has appeared in the big leagues. 

He was 7-9 with a 5.10 ERA in 44 major-league appearances, including 19 starts, in 2016 and ‘17. 

Stephenson showed some promise late last season, when he ended up 5-6 with a 4.68 ERA in 84.2 innings. 

He pitched in Dayton in 2012 and ’13, totaling 22 starts with seven wins against seven defeats. 

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