Reds stave off sweep in extras on Sunday
After dropping the first three games in Warshington, the Reds finally came out on top after Joey Votto broke a tie with a big double in the 11th. Dusty: "Finally, they couldn't walk Joey. We had some runners on base. That was big." The recent offensive drought has been well-covered here, but I'm confident things will turn around. Jay Bruce thinks so, predicting before the game: "I personally know we're going to hit. We always hit. In my opinion, it's better to do this now than in July or August. We absolutely have to do a better job, and that's the bottom line. With the exception of a few guys, no one is really hitting."
The Reds may not be off to a hot start
But if it's any condolence, most of the great Reds squads of the past few decades similarly suffered from bumbling beginnings. The '95 team actually lost their first six contests before righting the ship en route to the playoffs.
BP was finally back in the lineup yesterday,
but can't be counted on to the same El Beeperino yet. On going easy on a sac bunt in the 7th inning: "When I was pushing, I felt it grab and decided I should take my time for a little bit. In the field, I had forgotten all about it.... I didn't hurt it, but I felt it. I just play. When I took off (on a bunt) in the seventh, I was like, whoa." Sheldon notes that Phillips also hit a one-out double in the ninth inning and could not run at full speed. He was lifted for pinch-runner Wilson Valdez as a precaution.
The BP situation is concerning with the recent injury to Miguel Cairo,
who hasn't replicated his Arab Spring of 2010-11 after a 1 for 9 start this season. He left Saturday's game with a strained left hammy: "When I slid into home, I felt a cramp, a big cramp." Even when the Reds score, bad things happen. With the Reds off today he'll be reevaluated. Fay speculates that Todd Frazier could get a call-up.
ED44 talks about playing under Marge
If you missed the Harvard Park showing on BET yesterday, I can't encourage you enough to see when it will air next. Davis spoke candidly about the difficulties caused by the onerous former owner, among other things. On his kidney injury suffered in the '90 WS: "Marge sent me to her private doctor, he didn’t examine me or do anything," so he sought out another physician who said he "shouldn’t be playing." Doctors told him he needed 14-18 months to recover. Makes you appreciate the current medical staff, huh? Davis' thoughts on Marge dropping the big enchilada of epithets was also pretty interesting.
- The SBN Mothership talks about the evolution of Firstbasemen,
in the context of Joey Vott's recent extension. Compared to the TTO behemoths like Jason Giambi ten years ago: "Votto is something else entirely. He's what would happen if one of those big sluggers had learned the same lessons the rest of baseball had, able to lead baseball in on-base percentage and slugging while running the bases and playing defense like someone who is not aware he could have signed with an American League team." While the revolution at Shortstop got a lot of ink in the late '90s and aughts, the changes at Firstbase get much less attention. There's an old Poz article that I can't find but which argues that teams used to stash aging infielders and corner outfielders at Firstbase rather than develop young, elite hitters to play there. When you think about some of our Firstbasemen in the '80s (Rose, Esasky, Benzinger), that has a ring of truth to it.
- Here's how the Votto extension went down
If you're like me and expected that a protracted negotiation preceded the landmark ten-year extension, you're wrong: "When he heard the words Votto didn’t know what to say. 'They’re offering a 10-year, $225-million extension,' his agent Dan Lozano told him.... For Votto though, it remained an offer. "We know Joey," said Reds assistant GM Bob Miller. "He’s not going to do anything rash. He’s going to think about things. The handshake was to say thanks. He’s courteous." So basically it was offer, a couple of days, then acceptance. Thanks to ams78 for the link.
- Doug asks, what do the extensions for Phillips and Votto mean for our prospects?
Henry Rodriguez is perhaps the most directly affected Reds minor leaguer, as his days of counting down to BP's departure are over. H-Rod has now played several games at 3B after spending little time there before this season. Doug notes the prior questions about Henry's defensive play at second and his maturity, but believes that Henry may have enough power to make it at the hot corner.
- Some fine New York trolling here on the subject of Robinson Cano's next contract
Since Votto is merely a "solid" player, an extension for Cano should go in the neighborhood of $300 million. Even more laughable is comparing Cano to Joe Morgan - while ignoring things like walks, park effects, era effects, and baserunning. HT to the BBTF newsblog.
- In notable ex-Red news, Aaron Harang struck out 9 straight to start the game on Friday
Which fell one short of Tom Seaver's record. It was all downhill after that, as son of former Red, Max Venable, muscled a HR (in Petco) to lead off the 4th. The Harangatang finished the night with 13 Ks in 6 1.3 IP, but allowed 4 runs and didn't get a decision. Todd Coffey followed by allowing two runs without recording an out. On a final note, former Reds combined for 4 San Diego doubles, with Yonder Alonso hitting two and Chris Denorfia and Jeremy Hermida each hitting one.
- It's not a scarlet "A,"
but a brilliant, strategically-placed wishbone-C might advertise more than a lady's fanhood. I don't know how else to describe this without sounding dirty, so you'll have to go ahead and click 'mache's (sfw) link.