When we last saw Nick Senzel, he was mashing a Michael Lorenzen meatball way over the left field wall in GABP on Thursday, slugging the kind of dinger that let you know that his surgically repaired right shoulder was no longer bothering him in the slightest. In camp this year knowing he’ll be on the Opening Day roster for the first time - service time manipulation and said shoulder injury now in the past - Senzel has impressed pretty much everyone early on in camp, exactly what we all hoped we’d see from the once hyped, still young player.
Except, we now haven’t seen him in any of the Reds intersquad games for a trio of days, something Bell discussed with the beats earlier Sunday. As MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon relayed, Senzel is dealing with a bit of a hyperextended left elbow, something that while minor has kept him sidelined for the time being.
It is absolutely paramount to point out that Bell intimated that if it were the actual season, Senzel likely would’ve missed a game and been right back in the lineup. Given where we are in this modified/scrambled/bedazzled/begrudged season/preseason, however, he’s been given a few days off to get it right and let some of the other OFs in the glut get to show they belong, too.
Frankly, I’m treating it as an incredibly minor ding. Frankly, I know a select few of you are going to go but but but INJURIES! I cannot and will not try to stop that, and am merely trying to be objective here. Big time baseball players ding themselves. Senzel dinged himself, again. You can choose to focus on the ‘again’ in that sentence if you please, but I don’t find this as reason to do that.
In other news, the Reds rounded out their draft-class signings by putting pen to paper with Wake Forest commit Jackson Miller, the catcher they drafted out of high school in Competitive Balance Round B. As MLB Pipeline’s Jim Callis noted, Miller signed for a slightly over-slot deal, something that was expected to be needed on draft day to get him to forego his college commitment.
Supplemental 2nd-rder Jackson Miller signs with @Reds for $1.29 million (slot 65 value = $1,025,100). Florida HS C, advanced prep bat with good approach, athletic for his position, solid arm. Wake Forest recruit. @MLBDraft #WearAMask— Jim Callis (@jimcallisMLB) July 12, 2020
He’s a long ways away, as are most high school catchers, let alone ones who are as relatively new to the position as he is, but he sure has a ton of projectible offensive talent, to boot. I am excite.
Way back when we thought there would be a 2020 MiLB season, we implored you not to sleep on former 1st round pick Jonathan India for a litany of reasons. Though his prospect luster has certainly lost a bit of its shine over the last year, there are still ample reasons to think the former University of Florida product can hack it as a big leaguer, and today he and his boomstick had that on full display in GABP against Lucas Sims.
That, my friends, is how you mauleth a meatball.
For the latest from an in-person perspective on the goings-on at GABP, I highly suggest you read through the latest from C. Trent Rosecrans, as he’s got great insight into the early action over at The Athletic. From the roster makeup to rule changes to the nature of playing in quiet stadiums to how Joey Votto looks in early play (GOOD), it’s a great read, complete with insight from Bell, and others.
David Laurila’s Sunday Notes section at FanGraphs has a pair of interesting Reds-related stories in it, so I’ll point you that way. First, he spoke with Bell about how the Reds are attempting to address and prioritize mental health this season, something I think anyone with a pulse who has tried existing during this pandemic can instantly recognize as an important step. A first step, really, as professional sports have rarely even given the concept a sniff, but it’s encouraging to see the Reds on the perceived forefront. Also in there is a story about how Kyle Farmer ended up at the University of Georgia instead of his father’s alma mater - the University of Mississippi - and the repercussion on the diamond from that series of events. Check it!
Finally, Joey Votto is, and has been, really, really, ridiculously good. Ridiculously good.