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CIN@CLE: Leake fans four over seven solid innings

After splitting the first two games of a weekend series in Cincinnati, the Reds and Twins will play a rubber match on Sunday in the final game of Interleague Play for both clubs.

The Twins will be looking to stop a three-series losing streak in Interleague Play. They have not lost more Interleague series than they've won since going 2-4 in 2005. They were 3-3 each of last two years, although they ended up with an 8-10 overall records both years. A win Sunday would allow them to finish the year 3-3 in series and 9-9 overall.

For the Reds, Scott Rolen will look to keep the ball rolling on his recent success. After a rough start to the season, which included a .174 batting average through May 11 and a strained left shoulder that sidelined him for a month, Rolen may finally be turning things around.

In five games since returning to the lineup on June 18, Rolen is 7-for-18 with a homer and five RBIs.

"It was nice just being able to do something," Rolen said on Saturday. "When you're hurt, you're hurt and you don't want to play. When I started feeling healthy again and getting some competitiveness back, that's when you kind of whet your appetite a little bit and want to get back in there."

"That's huge," said Reds manager Dusty Baker. "You just don't know how happy that makes me. He looks better, period."

Rolen and the Reds will battle with Scott Diamond, who has never faced any of the current Reds. The 25-year-old Diamond is 5-3 with a 2.57 ERA this season.

Diamond has lost two straight starts, allowing four earned runs to both the Phillies and Pirates. While National League opponents have caused Diamond trouble, he's 5-1 with a 1.61 ERA against the American League, including four starts without allowing an earned run.

Mike Leake will take the hill for Cincinnati. Leake has posted a 2-5 record and 4.70 ERA this season. He hasn't lost a start since May 11, and has twice this month gone seven innings while allowing one earned run.

Reds: Stubbs could return on Monday
• Center fielder Drew Stubbs should be available to rejoin the Reds on Monday after making his first rehab appearance on Friday.

Stubbs, who's been out of action since June 6 with a strained left oblique, went 0-for-2 and played five innings in center with Class A Dayton. He also took batting practice and infield without any complications.

"No soreness, no pain during the game or anything like that," Stubbs said. "Taking two weeks off, from any game action, you never know how you're going to feel stepping in and getting back in the flow of the game. I felt really comfortable, like I haven't really missed a beat."

Reds manager Dusty Baker said the plan is for Stubbs to play seven innings in Dayton on Saturday and nine on Sunday before heading back to Cincinnati on Monday.

• In his last 32 games, Joey Votto is batting .420 (47-for-112) with 13 doubles, seven homers and 21 RBIs.

Twins: Mauer back in lineup at first base
• Joe Mauer started at first base and batted third against the Reds on Saturday. He went 1-for-4 with a double in his first time playing the field since June 17.

Mauer suffered a bruised right thigh in a 3-for-4 performance against the Brewers that day. He said he still has some swelling in his thigh, but felt good enough to play on Saturday morning.

"I'm excited about getting back in there," said Mauer before Saturday's game. "I think what I did earlier [Friday] helped. I've been available to pinch-hit the four games that I'd been out. I'd just woke up today and it felt like I could get back in there."

Mauer drew a walk in a pinch-hit at-bat in the sixth inning against the Reds on Friday. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said Mauer was available to catch, but wanted to give a struggling Justin Morneau a day off.

• Trevor Plouffe is hitting .356 (26-for-73) with five doubles, nine home runs and 17 RBIs in 18 games in June. He has eight homers in 17 Interleague games this season, and has reached safely in 14 of those contests.

Worth noting
• The Twins own a 9-8 all-time advantage over the Reds. The two clubs met each season from 1997-2001, but hadn't played each other since until this weekend's series.

• Ryan Doumit is one of three Twins to have faced Leake. Doumit is 2-for-13 lifetime off the right-hander.

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