On to Oakland
Monday lineup vs. OAK
*Edinson Volquez’s next start for Triple-A Louisville was moved back to Wednesday, instead of Tuesday.
“We gave him an extra day because of the added pitch count,” Reds head trainer Paul Lessard said. Volquez is likely to throw 90 pitches in the game against Toledo.
*Homer Bailey (right shoulder inflammation) is expected to begin a throwing program by the time the Reds get home from this trip. Lessard said that Bailey’s shoulder exercise program has been intensified.
*Catcher Ryan Hanigan (fractured left thumb) did catching and blocking drills early this afternoon and later caught Johnny Cueto’s side bullpen session.
“It went very good,” Hanigan said.
*Chris Dickerson went to Louisville to take batting practice. He has not yet begun a rehab assignment. Dickerson just wanted to swing against real pitching, rather than a machine while the team was out of town.
*Orlando Cabrera gets a break today. Cabrera is 8-for-50 (.160) in 13 games since July 6 when he hurt his right ankle. He’s also 2-for-his-last 22. Dusty Baker had Cabrera for a short meeting in his office today. Baker thinks that Cabrera has been making great contact but had little luck.
“A lot of times, people just see how many hits you’ve got. They don’t see how you’ve hit the ball,” Baker said. “Jay [Bruce] was our hard-luck guy earlier and he’s been our hard-luck guy the last 10 days or two weeks. He’s been hitting the ball on the nose and has nothing to show for it all over the field. I said ‘keep swinging. Sometimes the numbers are deceiving. If you keep hitting the ball hard, you’ve got action.”
*Speaking of Bruce, he is 4-for-25 (also .160) in his last seven games and getting a break.
*I said hello to former Reds INF Adam Rosales during batting practice. Rosales asked me if I had any Skyline Chili before making the trip. During his time in Cincinnati, I unsuccessfully encouraged him to give Skyline a try but he never made it there before the trade to Oakland.
*It’s funny how the Reds can’t seem to get three facets of the game — hitting, starting pitching and bullpen — clicking at the same time. The bullpen is finally getting it together just as the hitting takes leave. Reds relievers didn’t allow a run in any of the last four games (8 1/3 innings) and have a 0.79 ERSA over the last five games (11 1/3 innings).
*Despite the offensive void of the past weekend, the Reds remain the National League’s best team in hitting with a .274 average. They also lead the Majors with a .291 average with runners in scoring position.
*Although they came up empty against Ryan Rowland-Smith of the Mariners Sunday, the Reds are encountering another struggling pitcher in the A’s Gio Gonzalez. The lefty is 6-5 with a 4.21 ERA but is 1-2 with a 6.04 ERA in four starts in June while opponents have batted .314. He has also issued 39 walks, which is tied for third most in the American League.
*Interesting to see that the Blue Jays designated former Reds 3B Edwin Encarnacion for assignment on Monday. He was optioned to Triple-A on Sunday after batted .200 with nine homers and 22 RBIs. How does that Scott Rolen trade look to you now?
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