Reds top the Rays 7-0 behind pitching and home runs

That's a great way to start the Spring, don't you think?  A quick recap of the action, in case you missed it:

  • Edinson Volquez looked solid, though he threw a few too many pitches for 3 innings of work (49 pitches, 28 strikes).  Still, you can't be upset with 3 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 3 SO in the first start of the year.
  • Johnny Cueto was much more efficient, throwing just 28 pitches over 3 innings.  He allowed only one base-runner (a 4-pitch walk) but struck out 3 batters as well.
  • Homer Bailey was probably the most impressive pitcher of the day.  He threw just 7 pitches, striking out 2 batters and inducing a groundout to the third hitter in the 7th.
  • Most of the Reds offense came in the 5th inning as the speedsters showed what they can do.  Three straight singles off of Randy Choate loaded the bases for Jerry Hairston Jr.  Hairston launched one over the left-field fence for a grand slam and the Reds were up 4-0.  They tacked another run on when Adam Rosales reached on a two-base error and Darnell McDonald singled him in.
  • Rosales homered in the 9th to add two more runs to the board.  Rosales is a quiet player that could end up sneaking on to the roster if someone like Alex Gonzalez goes on the DL.  I'd keep my eye on him.
  • The base running in today's game was suspect at best.  The Reds had two guys thrown out on the basepaths, including Joey Votto at home plate in the 4th inning.  Havoc was most definitely created.

The story of the day was definitely the pitching as Volquez, Cueto, and Bailey were all impressive.  It's not surprising since it usually takes a week or two for the hitters to start catching up, so I wouldn't put too much weight on what happens in a game like this.  That being said, it's still great to see things go well for all three.

Joe Nuxhall Honorary Star of the Game

This year we'll be naming a star of the game after every game, just like Joe Nuxhall used to do back in the day.  Today's star is Jerry Hairston Jr.  The pitchers were all impressive, but Hairston gets the recognition for reminding us that all of the havoc in the world can't top the speed of a grand slam.

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