Reds drop heavy artillery on Canada
The Reds ganged up on Team Canada with 10 runs in the first two innings and 18 total hits. Ryan Ludwick and Miguel Olivo each had 3R HRs, and Shin-Soo Choo had 3 hits. On the pitching side, Sam LeCure struck out four in two scoreless innings.
Joey Votto abstained from playing against his employer and countrymen, but Kyle Lotzkar was in no position to choose. He pitched a scoreless 8th (working around a Denis Phipps' error) against his "homeboys," as Dusty put it. Also noted is that Lotzkar is transitioning to the bullpen to avoid further shoulder discomfort resulting from hitting.
DatDude goes 4-for-4 as U.S. loses to Rox
The Americans dropped an exhibition to Colorado, who wisely loaned the U.S. several pitchers in the late innings and then scored off of them. Brandon Phillips did his part with four hits. The Americans play their first real game against Mexico on Friday night at Chase Field (9 EST).
Cueto and the new cutter?
Hal notes that during Johnny Cueto's start on Tuesday, he showed off a cutter - a pitch he taught himself. Arizona's leadoff hitter Adam Eaton remarked "Nice pitch. Nice cutter, man." Mario Soto agreed: "Not only is it a good cutter, he throws it hard." According to Pitch FX data, Cueto threw a cutter about 3% of the time last year. He plans to use it more this season. He also plans to "eat rice and beans, every day" until he's back up to 214 lbs. Slowly, he's eating his way back to the best shape of his life.
Dusty liebt ‘groß Lutz’
Donald Lutz has been crushing the ball in Spring Training, with an OPS near 1.000. Dusty has taken notice: "He hit a ball as hard the other day . . . it reminded me of Willie Stargel and those guys." The Bavarian Bomber lost his power stroke after a promotion to Pensacola last season - possibly due to an oblique strain. He'll transition from the OF to 1B for Pensacola this year.
Brewers ST continues to be painful
Last night, GM Doug Melvin was rushed to the hospital following a scorpion sting. Scorpions have a taste for the Brewers, having given Zach Braddock a little love last year. For the intrepid RRs trekking to Arizona this weekend - watch out!
The Daily Upper Decker previews the Reds, hopefully in character
The DUD dudes are still traumatized by the Crying Game end to the 2012 season: "It was the equivalent to working out hard the entire year, and it finally pays off when you lock eyes with a hot broad with fake tits at Bennigan's in October.... But out of nowhere, as her dress hits the floor, you see that she's really a dude, and your night and your season is over." I know, right? Good thing Shin-Soo Choo is "like a new girl in the neighborhood without herpes." Good lord.