Hanigan back, rotation change
The Reds made catcher Ryan Hanigan’s activation from the disabled list official on Wednesday. However, Hanigan wasn’t in the Reds starting lineup — even with favorite batterymate Bronson Arroyo on the mound. Corky Miller is getting the start.
“He flew all day to get here,” said Dusty Baker, who will start Hanigan on Thursday. “And Miller worked well with Bronson the last couple of times too.”
Hanigan had a solid five-game rehab assignment at Triple-A Louisville, batting .389 (7-for-18) with two doubles, two RBIs and four runs scored. He said there were no symptoms from the concussion he suffered on Aug. 23 when he caught a foul ball off of his helmet.
“I was fortunate that it wasn’t real serious,” Hanigan said. “It was a milder concussion. I feel fine. I got some hits. [I had] a couple of days of working out and feeling fresh and trying to find my timing. I swung the bat alright. Hopefully, it will translate up here.”
The only thing Hanigan didn’t get was a foul tip off of the mask.
“Hopefully they will hit at an angle,” Hanigan said. “I think that was more of a freakish thing. Who knows why that happened. I’ve taken a million balls off of the mask like that. Just the way it hit and the fact that the mask broke is what combined for the concussion.”
RHP Justin Lehr had his bullpen session and had no trouble with the strained groin that caused him to miss a start. The Reds have changed their rotation for the Cubs series. Lehr will start on Friday, Johnny Cueto will go on Saturday and Homer Bailey will pitch on Sunday.
“We’d rather have Cueto pitch Saturday to get an extra day of rest,” Baker said.
LHP Daniel Herrera leads the Reds staff with 62 appearances entering Wednesday. His professional high was 64 games, set last season between Double-A, Triple-A and the Majors. In his last eight appearances, Herrera has a 7.04 ERA.
“He’s a little worn.,” Baker said. “He is still doing well against lefties. He just has to figure out how to make the adjustment against righties. Those guys have hit him hard. But this is a period that you have to get through. You have to get through uncharted waters and places that you haven’t been through before in order to know how to do it when you get back there, which is next year.”
In the eighth inning on Tuesday, Herrera gave up a leadoff double to right-handed pinch-hitter Ryan Spilborghs, who later scored on a sac fly.
“I still feel really strong,” Herrera said. “I think I’m still throwing some pretty quality innings and getting some outs. As far as health goes, my arm feels really good. I might be a little fatigued at this point, but so is everybody else. It will be good to finish the year strong. … They hit me a little bit, obviously last night.”
LHP Matt Maloney doesn’t have a starting assignment yet after he came out of Tuesday’s game with a blister on his left middle finger. It derailed the best start of his big league career after five innings.
“He came in today to apologize,” Baker said. “I said you don’t have to apologize. He wanted to keep pitching so we could win. It just got to the point where he couldn’t pitch anymore without tearing it. If he tears it, he’s probably through for the year.”
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