Reds salvage roadtrip with weekend wins at Wrigley
The somewhat scuffling starting rotation picked up the offense on Saturday and Sunday, with Bronson Arroyo and Johnny Cueto each throwing eight strong innings. After scoring just six runs in three games at Milwaukee, the Reds powered their way to 20 runs in four games at the friendly confines (though half came in Friday's classic "to err is to Cub" victory). With his 15th win, Cueto's Cy Young buzz begins to build.
Reds are off today, then meet, host the Mets
Today's the first day of rest for the Reds this month. Tomorrow, Mat Latos takes the hill against Chris Young in a battle of a couple of tree-toppers. I'm predicting a big series at home for Jay Bruce, who is hopefully rejuvenated after a couple of days off in Chicago and a long ball yesterday. No word on when Scott Rolen will return, though it doesn't sound imminent: "I haven't been moving well enough the past couple days to do much of anything. I've just been doing some therapy stuff, so it's just a time issue. I just need to get the time in [and let it heal]."
If you've got little ones, consider going to this Sunday's game
The first 8,000 fans ages 14 and younger will receive a free copy of Mr. Redlegs and His Great Adventure: A Journey Through Cincinnati Reds History. The book covers the history of the organization with the assistance of Mr. Redlegs himself. Neat-o, for real.
Second procedure for Votto adds week-plus to recovery time
As we've discussed, the big news from the roadtrip was Joey Votto returning to Cincinnati to undergo a minor surgery on his knee to remove a piece of floating cartilage. The Reds are saying this will add another 7-10 days to the originally expected recovery time, which was 3-4 weeks from the initial surgery on July 17. It's quite possible that we don't see Votto on the field until after rosters expand, though a burst of sartorial nationalism from the closing ceremonies could speed his recovery.
And speaking of roster expansion, there's talk that the Reds could call up Billy Bolt
With Vince Coleman's minor league stolen base record in sight (NYT is on it), there's not much left for Billy Hamilton to do for the remainder of this season. Well, other than continuing to work on his hitting and finding a defensive position. When asked over the weekend about the possibility of a call-up, Dusty said "possibly." But let's not get ahead of ourselves: "Number one, you've got to get on base.... You've got to be able to hit and get on base." Uhh, Dusty? You've seen your lineup card, right?
Ryan Ludwick studwicked his 21st homerun yesterday, and it's hard to imagine how poor the Reds offense would be without him. Since Votto's been out of the lineup, Ludwick has slashed a ... Vottoian .341/.404/.729. Hal argues that Ludwick got too pull-happy while playing in hitting-depressing parks in San Diego and Pittsburgh. Whatever Ludwick has changed this year, it's sure working.
No rotation manipulation by STL to get Wainwright more starts against Reds, Pirates
St. Louis considered but declined bumping Adam Wainwright up to Tuesday's slot to put him on schedule to face the Reds and Pirates a couple of more times over the next month. If Tony LaRussa has a direct line to Manager Mike Matheny's office, Mike isn't picking up.
Cingrani gets some love from MiLB.com
Lefty Tony Cingrani has shown little difficulty in adjusting from high-A Bakersfield to AA Pensacola. On his approach: "I just try to throw it hard and to a spot. For the most part, I hit my spots. I elevate the ball and move it in and out. When they swing, they usually miss. That's basically it." If his developing slider can match his swagger, his chances for a future rotation spot look bright.
Charlie Sheen says Reds have 'right combination'
The man knows winning, amirite?