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For first time, Mesoraco behind plate for Cueto

For first time, Mesoraco behind plate for Cueto

For first time, Mesoraco behind plate for Cueto

ARLINGTON -- For the first time ever in the regular season, catcher Devin Mesoraco worked with Reds ace Johnny Cueto on Friday night.

That's because Cueto's regular batterymate, Ryan Hanigan, has been dealing with a sore left ankle. Hanigan said he turned his ankle about a week and a half ago while behind the plate.

"It's pretty inflamed and I'm trying to manage it," Hanigan said. "They're giving me a couple of days to get it right. I will be all right. I just have to grind through it."

Hanigan, who did not catch on Wednesday at Oakland, is expected to miss the series in Texas. Reds manager Dusty Baker didn't believe Hanigan, who is hitless in his last 12 at-bats, would need to go on the disabled list.

"It doesn't look like it, but you never know if it doesn't heal," Baker said. "This will be five days. You don't have to double switch or anything. There's a good chance Meso will play all of these games. I just hope nothing happens to Meso."

Mesoraco, who primarily catches for Mat Latos and Mike Leake, didn't expect any problems being paired with Cueto.

"I think the one thing that's been stressed to me is to just watch the game when I'm on the bench and to learn as much as I can," Mesoraco said. "I've probably watched 50 or so of Johnny's starts the last two years. I know how he wants to pitch. I still talk to him just the same, as if I was catching, after the game. How did he pitch this guy? How did he feel out there? I saw you throw a lot of sliders. We still talk and have a good relationship, but this will be our first actual time working together."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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