Wanted: run producers
Long before injuries decimated the roster, the No. 1 problem plaguing the Reds all season was run production. It’s something Reds manager Dusty Baker acknowledged on Thursday morning.
Baker was asked about his impressions of Wladimir Balentien, who hasn’t been remarkable but isn’t struggling either. Balentien has 14 walks, 19 strikeouts and a .272 average with two homers and eight RBIs entering Thursday. The manager wasn’t ready to comment much about Balentien’s future but he highlight what he’s seeking from his entire roster.
“I’m looking for some dudes that drive in some runs and hopefully don’t strikeout so much because we have enough strikeout people,” Baker said. “We’ve got four or five guys that are 1-to-3, 1-to-5 [strikeout] ratio guys. That’s a lot, especially if you’re not hitting the ball out of the ballpark a lot.
“We are striking out too much for me. That really bothers me because you have no chance to do something to help anybody. We need some guys that can drive in some runs. We need some RBI men. That’s what I’m looking for. If you look at our driving in runners in scoring position, we have some very low numbers.”
Some offensive stats:
The Reds are tied for last in the Majors (with the Padres) by batting .242. They are ranked 15th out of 16 teams in runs scored. They are 15th in hitting with runners in scoring position (.241). They are 11th in strikeouts and 15th in on-base percentage (.311).
It’s just a day off for Scott Rolen. Baker spoke to him and Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston after the trade and breaks when there are day games after night games will be common.
“We’ve got three straight day games in Chicago and no day off until another week after Chicago,” Baker said.
1B Yonder Alonso was promoted to Triple-A Louisville for the International League playoffs. In his first game, Alonso was 0-for-4 with a walk and two strikeouts. The Bats lost an 8-4 game to Durham. It’s a best-of-five series.
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