The Joe Nuxhall Memorial Honorary Star of the Game
Jordan Pacheco survived the first round of cuts in Cincinnati Reds Spring Training, and the former Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks utility man continued his impressive Cactus League performance on Monday. Pacheco went 2 for 2 with 2 doubles (one of which was admittedly lost in the sun by the Los Angeles Angels outfield), and he now owns a 1.060 OPS at this point in the spring. With Devin Mesoraco still yet to appear in a game, Pacheco's hot spring and ability to catch if need be - 59 of his 273 career MLB appearances have come behind the plate - may well earn him a roster spot to start the season as added insurance, if nothing else.
Regardless, he's played well so far, and I'm sure the Reds will look to keep him around at some level if possible. Have a trophy, Jordan, and keep swinging a hot bat.
Honorable Mentions are due to: Jose Peraza, whose hot streak continued with a 2 for 3 day (that included a steal and run scored); Ivan De Jesus, Jr., who went 2 for 3; Yorman Rodriguez, who walked twice; Dayan Diaz, who tossed a perfect inning; and Raisel Iglesias, who wasn't totally sharp but still gets dap for making his first appearance of 2016.
- Peraza led off the Top of the 1st with a looping single over the 1Bs head into RF, and he ended up on 3B a batter later when Nate Smith's pick-off move went haywire. Suarez then blooped a single that landed in between the CF, RF, and 2B, and that allowed Peraza to score the game's first run. Reds led, 1-0.
- The Angels wasted little time in jumping on Iglesias, though, as Cliff Pennington singled up the middle on the first pitch of Igloo's Cactus League debut. Pennington then motored to 3B when Daniel Nava singled on a bleeding liner to RF that just cleared the outstretched glove of a diving Jay Bruce (which left runners on the corners with nobody out). Fortunately, though, Iglesias got Andrelton Simmons to ground into a 6-4-3 double play, and though that scored Pennington, it shut down what could've been a bigger inning. Game tied, 1-1.
- The Angels jumped in front in the Bottom of the 3rd against Tim Melville. Jefry Marte took a leadoff walk, and he motored to 3B when Todd Cunningham singled to RF. Marte then scored on a bunt off the bat of Pennington when Melville seemed to hesitate a bit on where to go with it once he fielded it (he eventually went to 1B to get the out). Reds trailed, 2-1.
- The Bottom of the 5th saw the wheels fall off for both Melville and his replacement on the mound, Jumbo Diaz. Melville recorded one out before allowing single - walk - single to load the bases, at which point Diaz was summoned to help clean up the mess. Let's just say that didn't go so well. Diaz yielded a 2-run single to C.J. Cron, and then after getting Ji-Man Choi to fly out for the 2nd out of the inning he was touched up to the tune of triple - single - single - double. He struck out Pennington to end the inning, at which point the Reds found themselves trailing, 8-1.
- The Reds and Angels then traded runs in the 6th and 7th, but Cincinnati failed to mount any rally of significance thereafter. Reds lost, 10-2.
A GIF to piss off Goose Gossage
- Iglesias threw just a single inning in this one, which was plenty well within the realm of expectations given how the team has brought him (and his shoulder) along slowly this spring. His final line: 1 IP, ER, K, 2 H. Baby steps.
- Suarez was picked off 1B in the Top of the 1st, which wasn't pretty. He's only stolen 7 bags in his 182 career big league games and is owner of a rather awful 71/44 SB/CS career mark in the minors, so hopefully it was just a Spring Training glitch and not a sign he'll be asked to be more active running in 2016.
- Dayan Diaz was the only Reds pitcher to not allow an earned run on the day. Oops.
- Joey Votto went 0 for 3 and failed to reach base in a game for the first time since the Nixon Administration.
- The Reds will take on the reigning World Series champions on Tuesday when the Kansas City Royals come to Goodyear. Former Royal Brandon Finnegan will toe the rubber for the Reds in a continued bid to crack the starting rotation, and he'll likely have a big ol' chip on his shoulder if his comments from the fall have any bearing.