Gonzalez starting, lineups & notes
Sorry for the late update today but there is some connectivity issues at the MMW-Sarasota bureau at the moment. The Reds play the Netherlands WBC squad at 6pm.
Dickerson LF, Gonzalez DH, Bruce RF, Rosales 2B, Encarnacion 3B, Nix CF, Keppinger SS, Barker 1B, Hanigan C
P – Arroyo
Kingsale RF, Schoop 2B, Simon 1B, Halman CF, Adrianna DH, DeCastier 3B, Engelhardt LF, Jansen C, Statia SS
P – Vanden Hurk
- This will be a good test for Alex Gonzalez, who is seeing his first game action since 2007. He missed all of last season with the compression fracture in his left knee. Dusty Baker said that Gonzalez could start playing SS next week. He will get two ABs tonight.
“I will start him off DHing the first couple of times out,” Baker said. “I think he’s ready now to play shortstop but we’ll probably wait some time until early next week. I think playing shortstop will be, other than the physical exertion, be easier than getting his bat stroke back. He hasn’t hit in a while. He hasn’t seen live pitching in a while.”
What do the Reds need to see before saying Gonzalez is fully ready?
“Just natural movements,” Baker said. “The toughest part of getting over an injury is the psychological part when you’re not injured anymore and when you don’t have to calculate your every move and every step. It becomes natural. I speak from experience on that one.”
- Reliever Bill Bray (shoulder) is scheduled to throw in a live BP session this afternoon after the annual MLB security meeting in the clubhouse.
- The most experienced big league player on the Dutch team is Randall Simon. The Reds will be facing their own Minor League pitchers, Alexander Smit and Juan Carlos Sulbaran, who are scheduled to work from the bullpen.
- Joey Votto played LF for Team Canada vs. the Blue Jays on Tuesdat, which Baker said he didn’t know was going to happen.
“I hadn’t talked to anybody,” Baker said. “Somebody told me he was probably going to probably DH some and play first base. I didn’t know he would play left. He’s played there before and he’s willing to do anything to help his team. That’s Joey Votto.”
Team Canada has Justin Morneau at first base. On Wednesday vs. the Phillies, Votto was the DH.