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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. 

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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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