Deep in the Heart of Texas
For those who have clamored to see Brandon Phillips bat second, you will be placated for one night, at least.
*For some reason, Astros 1B Lance Berkman is known as “The Puma.” For good reason, he sharpens his claws when playing the Reds. Check out these lifetime stats vs. Cincinnati.
327 AVG, 48 HRs and 133 RBIs .444 OBP .699 SLG.
*I know you many of you have been pining to see Phillips bat second. But does this concern you about the top of the order tonight?
Drew Stubbs: team leading 21 strikeouts, .273 OBP
Brandon Phillips: 13 strikeouts, .296 OBP
*Orlando Cabrera, the usual No. 2 hitter, is the team leader with 13 RBIs but is batting .239 with a .267 OBP.
“He asked me how I felt hitting sixth,” Cabrera said of Baker. “I said ‘whatever you decide to do, I don’t care.’ It’s only for one reason – to see if it works, to do something different.”
This was Baker’s take on the lineup change:
“I’m just trying to figure out a way to get Brandon started and maybe hitting in front of Joey will help. Rolen has been good. They’ve been pitching around Joey lately, throwing him tough pitches. Cabrera has been real good in the clutch driving in runs.”
“I called them in and spoke to both of them about it. It’s all good.”
*The last time Phillips batted second for the Reds was April 21, 2008, vs. the Dodgers. He also did it April 20, 2008, vs. the Brewers but not at all in 2009.
*This season, right-handed hitters are batting .303 vs. Astros starter Bud Norris and lefties are hitting .167.
*The University of Michigan baseball team will retire Barry Larkin’s No. 16 jersey before a May 1 game vs. Ohio State. Larkin played at Michigan from 1983-85 and was a two-time All-American. He will be the sixth player to have his number retired by Michigan baseball.
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