DENVER -- Reds closer Francisco Cordero reached a significant milestone in Friday night's 4-1 win over the Rockies, as he earned his 322nd career save. It made him the all-time saves leader among pitchers from the Dominican Republic, giving him one more than his friend, Jose Mesa."It was an exciting moment," Cordero said. "Not only for me, but for the people who have been following me." While Friday's save, his 32nd of the season, gave Cordero reason for reflection -- the save moved him past Mesa for 13th on the all-time list -- it was just the latest in a string of dominating performances for the right-hander since the All-Star break. Since the break, Cordero has converted 15 straight save opportunities. He has appeared in 22 games during that stretch, giving up just three earned runs over 23 innings (1.17 ERA). "Since those games in Milwaukee [before the break, when he gave up six combined runs], I've been pitching pretty well," Cordero said. "This is where I try to be all the time. I try to get the job done and be the best at what I do." Reds catcher Ryan Hanigan said Cordero's success has been founded on his ability to sharply control all four of his pitches. "He's used all his pitches, he's not walking guys, and he's keeping the ball down," Hanigan said. "He's getting ahead. His stuff's always been great. It's really just the consistency of all four pitches. Usually he doesn't have one, necessarily, all the time, but right now he has all his pitches. He's been tough, man." Cordero needs three more saves to tie John Franco (148) for second on the Reds' all-time list.
Now healthy, Hanigan heating up offensively
DENVER -- It took Reds catcher Ryan Hanigan eight days to return to the lineup following a home-plate collision with Brewers outfielder Nyjer Morgan on July 8. The pain from the impact, however, took much longer to subside."It was miserable there for a while," Hanigan said. Fortunately for Hanigan, the pain and misery have diminished, and it has shown at the plate. Since Aug. 13, Hanigan is hitting .365 with three home runs and 10 RBIs. The catcher has improved his numbers with runners in scoring position, with his latest triumph being a two-run, bases-loaded single in the Reds' 4-1 win over the Rockies on Friday night. Hanigan leaned on a combination of methods to help him heal the affected areas in his neck and shoulder. Strong anti-inflammatories, exercises that focused on flexibility over strength and rest on days he wasn't playing were key to Hanigan's recuperation. "I did a lot of extra postgame and pregame stuff," Hanigan said. "Just the combination of all that helped." The demands of the catching position made recovery a difficult process for Hanigan, as he tried to play through the pain. "It was one of those things where it was affecting me, and I couldn't get loose," he said. "It just lingered." Now free of pain, Hanigan is aiming to finish the season strong and continue his recent surge. "It's a long year," he said. "You're going to have success, you're going to fail. It's a lot easier to have success, though, when you're feeling right with your body."
Nick Kosmider is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.