The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
The back of Chris Dominguez's baseball card won't inspire you to think he's a future world-beater, but the way he's hit so far this spring while in camp with the Cincinnati Reds certainly would. Dominguez blasted his 3rd dinger of March today against the Los Angeles Angels, mashing an Andrew Heaney pitch from Tempe halway back to Goodyear. Dominguez also doubled twice, scored twice, and drove in 4 runs on his 4 for 5 day, and while his spring K/BB ratio of 14 to 1 still makes you scratch your head and cross your fingers, there's no denying that he's got the kind of pop the Reds could use on their bench with Chris Heisey now in Dodger blue.
Have another JNMHSotG, Chris.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Brennan Boesch, who went 2 for 5 with an RBI and a pair of runs scored; Irving Falu, who went 3 for 3 with a run scored and a ribbie; and J.J. Hoover, who tossed a clean inning in relief.
- Boesch smacked an oppo-single in the Top of the 2nd, which was snazzy. Boesch then moved to 2B on a productive grounder from Dominguez before scooting home from there thanks to a single from Irving Falu. Reds led, 1-0.
- The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim from Tempe got that run back off Jason Marquis in the Bottom of the 2nd, though. David Freese and C.J. Cron smacked back to back singles to begin things, the second of which moved Freese up to 3B. A rinky-dink grounder to Dominguez at 1B scored Freese, and Marquis danced around a pair of laser-liners that luckliy were hit directly at Reds OFs to escape further damage. Game tied, 1-1.
- The Reds put a hurtin' on the Angels again in the Top of the 3rd. Kris Negron Dusty'd a bunt single with 1-out, and after Brandon Phillips took a walk with a runner on base while batting 3rd in the lineup and a subsequent force-out at 2B, Boesch doubled to plate Negron. Devin Mesoraco had been at 1B after his grounder forced out BP at 2B, and as he rounded the bases attempting to score on Boesch's double, he pulled up with an apparent leg injury at 3B and was promptly replaced by Chad Wallach. Wallach then scored along with Boesch when Dominguez blasted a 3-run dinger over the wall in LF. Reds led, 5-1.
- The Angels got two of those runs back in the Bottom of the 4th after C.J. Cron hit a dinger so far not even the AP Style Book could call it merely a homer. Freese singled before Cron's blast cleared the LF wall, the bullpen, the grassy area with hundreds of fans, and the trees that line the back of the stadium off a Marquis meatball. Reds led, 5-3.
- The Reds loaded the bases in the Top of the 6th, and they managed to push another two runs across the plate against reliever Scott Snodgress after Dominguez's leadoff double chased Heaney from the game. Skip Schumaker's single scored Dominguez, and the bases were then loaded thanks to a single from Falu and a walk to Smith, and Skip later crossed the plate when Negron took a walk. Reds led, 7-3.
- Pedro Villareal was brought on to pitch the Bottom of the 8th for the Reds, and that was a complete disaster. Villareal walked the first two batters he faced before the third - pinch hitter Marc Krauss - blasted a double to CF that scored Kyle Kubitza and moved Daniel Robertson to 3B. A single from Johnny Giavotella two batters later scored Robertson, and a Grant Green single thens cored Krauss. Reds led, 7-6.
- Cincinnati got an insurance run in the Top of the 9th, however, thanks again to Dominguez. He doubled with 1-out, which drove in Brodie Greene (who had walked to leadoff the inning). Sam LeCure dodged a double and an issued walk in the Bottom of the 9th to close things out for the good guys, and that was that. Reds win, 8-6!
<iframe src="http://www.fangraphs.com/graphframe.aspx?config=0&static=0&type=livewins&num=0&h=450&w=450&date=2013-05-07&team=Reds&dh=0" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" height="450" width = "450" style="border:1px solid black;"></iframe><br /><span style="font-size:9pt;">Source: <a href="http://www.fangraphs.com/livewins.aspx?date=2013-05-07&team=Reds&dh=0&season=2013">FanGraphs</a></span>
- Mesoraco's injury was later described as a "cramp in his left quad." While that sounds benign and minor, Mes was certainly miffed immediately after the play as he spiked his batting helmet and was visibly frustrated. Shortly afterwards, C. Trent Rosecrans caught up with Mes, who didn't seem nearly as worried about it at that point and indicated that he still planned on being ready for Opening Day.
- Marquez Smith looks like he's no bigger than 5'8" at best, though 5'10" is his official listing. Lotta pop in his bat, though.
- Jason Marquis' final line: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K. That means that since it was announced that he'd be in the Reds' starting rotation prior to his start against the Dodgers on March 18th, he's allowed 9 ER in 17 IP, with 18 hits and 8 walks conceded vs. just 6 strikeouts. That's the kind of stretch that explains why most teams wait until the end of March to make decisions, I believe.