What happened Monday at Macy's is a matter for the court. Mike Leake says his story will come out. Leake might be guilty of theft or stupidity or he might be innocent. But what was clear Thursday was sometimes athletes can perform very well in the most trying of times.

With his team desperately needing a win, Leake pitched one of the better games of his young career. He went seven innings and allowed three runs on the four hits to beat Arizona 7-4 before a crowd of 17,319 at Great American Ball Park. The win snapped a four-game losing streak.

"I was glad for him," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "I was proud of him. And we needed it badly. That's as big a win as we've had since Opening Day."

The Reds finish the homestand 2-5. But they're back over .500 at 10-9 and in first place as they head to St. Louis for three games, followed by three in Milwaukee.

Leaving on losing note after a 1-6 homestand would have been rough. To prevent that, Leake had to pitch well.

He did. He struck out six, walked two and retired 15 of the last 16 hitters he faced.

"It was important to uplift myself," he said. "And, hopefully, uplift some other people. Just to get things off my back a little bit."

Leake did not address the charges against him. But he answered when asked how he was doing mentally.

"I'll be better once it's all done," he said. "But right now, I've got to eat it and go out and there and do what I can for the team. It was nice to go out there and erase some things and pitch."

Leake wondered about fan reaction.

"A little bit," he said. "I was wondering if they were going to support me or not. For the most part, they were very nice."

The Reds considered whether to pull Leake from the start in the wake of his arrest.

"I didn't know how he was going to react," Baker said. "I didn't really have a thought. I had a hope and a prayer he'd respond. You really don't know, especially when a guy's young like that.