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1-2-3 strikes you're out & Reds fans get free LaRosa's pizza

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Reds' Aroldis Chapman winds up for a pitch to add to the strikeout count. Reds' Aroldis Chapman winds up for a pitch to add to the strikeout count.
LaRosa's CEO, Mike LaRosa. LaRosa's CEO, Mike LaRosa.
Starting the day after the game, fans have a week to redeem their ticket for free pizza. Starting the day after the game, fans have a week to redeem their ticket for free pizza.
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

Cincinnati Reds pitchers are striking out batters at a record pace so far this season, and their fans are eating it up.

Literally.

Anytime Reds pitchers combine for 11 or more strikeouts in a game during the 2013 season, win or lose, every ticket holder at Great American Ball Park wins a free LaRosa's pizza as part of a special promotion.

Officials say 11 batters have been struck out by Reds pitchers 7 times so far this year at Great American Ball Park. It's great for the stat lines and even better for hungry fans.

"We felt comfortable last year deciding at more than 11, we'd create the free pizza giveaway. It just so happens this year the Reds are blowing away all their previous records," said Mike LaRosa, Chief Executive Officer.

Starting the day after the game, fans have a week to redeem their ticket for free pizza.

Reds officials say all of the free pizza this season has cost the restaurant around $100,000. We asked, why the number 11?

"11 was the number that was possibly going to be achieved 10 to 11 times throughout the whole season in the home games," explained LaRosa.

Reds front office officials were also on board with LaRosa's when it comes to the free pizza giveaway, and said it's about enhancing the game experience.

"When you start to get to 7, 8, 9, the crowd is up and cheering extra loud for those strikeouts, and that can go on for a couple innings. For me, in terms of the mood and atmosphere in the game, this promotion is putting a lot of electricity in the building," said Phil Castellini, Reds Chief Operating Officer.

"The fans are all excited when we get to the 9th and 10th strikeout at the ball game, and that's exactly what we wanted to create is just a special buzz at Great American Ball Park," added LaRosa.

And, it looks like it's working.

"Anytime you get a situation where fans might get something for free, they're going to get more excited about the game, especially if it's related to the game.  It makes them cheer a little bit harder for that 11th strikeout," said Jacob Adams of Lebanon.

Castellini also says the Reds players are really into the free pizza promotion as well. When they're flirting with 11 strikeouts, the energized fans at the ball park are a positive force.

For LaRosa's, they aren't too worried about the money, saying other purchases generally take care of the cost.

For more information about the giveaway, visit their website - http://www.larosas.com/sliceoffun/CincinnatiReds.aspx

Check out the free pizza FOX19 enjoyed, courtesy of LaRosa's, of course! - https://vine.co/v/bPJDwOxKqKm

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