As the holidays have drawn to a close, it’s time to return to the ongoing “How Valuable Is…” series. Today’s topic: Mike Leake.

Cincinnati’s first-rounder in 2009, Leake made a splash in 2010, earning a spot in the rotation after spending nary a day* in the minor leagues. From day one, Leake displayed an uncommon poise and maturity on and off the field.

His performance was pretty darn good, as well. Through June 21, the rookie had a 5-1 record, with a 2.92 ERA and features in Sports Illustrated and Leake hit the wall a bit after that, but he still posted solid numbers for a 23 year-old making his major league debut: 8-4 with a 4.23 ERA in 138.1 innings spread over 24 appearances (22 starts).

As the Reds enter 2011, Leake is among a number of names in the mix for the rotation. Where does Leake stand in that competition? What is his future with this club? How do you see Leake’s career developing?

Inquiring minds want to know…let’s hear your thoughts, Nation.

*I used my Andy Griffith voice when saying that in my head.