July 2013

Hanigan hurt his hand

Reds catcher Ryan Hanigan was in the original starting lineup Monday, but was scratched during the afternoon and replaced by Devin Mesoraco. It appears Hanigan has hurt his left hand.

“I strained something in my hand. I’m going to see the doctor,” Hanigan said. “I did it swinging, yesterday.”

Hanigan wasn’t sure when he would be examined by the Brewers team doctor.

UPDATE: Hanigan has an irritation in his left wrist. X-rays were negative.

This season, Hanigan is batting .196 in 45 games. He also caught Homer Bailey’s no-hitter on Tuesday. Bailey is starting again tonight.

Hanigan already missed time on the disabled list from April 21-May 10 with a strained left oblique and a sore right thumb.

Mesoraco hasn’t been 100 percent after missing Saturday and Sunday vs. Seattle with back spasms.

Game 89: at MIL

Reds lineup vs. Brewers

Choo 8
Cozart 6
Votto 3
Phillips 4
Bruce 9
Frazier 5
Heisey 7
Hanigan 2 Mesoraco 2
Bailey 1

*Homer Bailey was named the NL’s co-Player of the Week. ( Hmm, wonder why). He shares the honor with Braves catcher Brian McCann.

Arroyo sets Reds HR allowed record

I touched on this in my game story on MLB.com (click here) but Reds starter Bronson Arroyo entered the team record book on Sunday. The first-inning solo home run he allowed to Nick Franklin was No. 235 he gave up in a Reds uniform. It broke Tom Browning’s record of 234. Arroyo also gave up a two-run homer to Justin Smoak on a two-out first pitch in the third inning. Neither long ball were monster shots. The first was 380 feet to right field and Smoak’s was 378 feet to left field.

Arroyo has had to spend much of a career pitching at Great American Ball Park, something Browning never did. Of course in 2011, Arroyo gave up a single-season club record 46 homers. I didn’t have room in my story, but here are some extended quotes on the topic from Arroyo:

“I think if you probably stack up my runs that I’ve given up in this ballpark vs. my homers – how many runs I’ve given up on homers and runs on non-homers scored, it’s got to be pretty much as skewed as you can get of anybody that has pitched in this uniform,” Arroyo said.

“I throw a certain style ball and guys hit the ball in the air off me quite a bit. Playing in a ballpark where maybe half the homers that go out aren’t homers in other ballparks that are larger, it’s just the way it is. You hope it evens out.

“You take every home run I’ve ever given up in this ballpark and stick me in San Francisco, maybe I only give up two-thirds of them. That’s life here. It obviously swings both ways so you can’t be so disappointed by it.”

Other items of note:

*Reds pitchers posted a 2.38 ERA during the six game homestand (with the one rainout).

*LHP Manny Parra had a 1-2-3 eighth inning. He has not allowed an earned run in his last 15 appearances, totaling 12 innings.

*The Mariners have a MLB-leading 22 first-inning home runs this season. They did it in all three games of this series.

Game 88: vs. SEA

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Votto, Phillips & Chapman All-Stars

The All-Star selection show is over and the Reds have three National League All-Stars in Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips and Aroldis Chapman.

Votto and Phillips were elected by the fans and will start. Chapman was named to the pitching staff via election on the players’ ballot.

Here is the 1B vote totals:

1. Joey Votto Reds 5,128,515
2. Paul Goldschmidt D-backs 4,269,685
3. Allen Craig Cards 3,241,131
4. Brandon Belt Giants 2,308,043
5. Freddie Freeman Braves 2,111,635
6. Adrian Gonzalez Dodgers 1,799,482
7. Adam LaRoche Nationals 1,237,035
8. Ryan Howard Phillies 972,241

Here are the 2B vote totals:

1. Brandon Phillips Reds 4,799,417
2. Matt Carpenter Cards 4,337,408
3. Marco Scutaro Giants 4,117,815
4. Daniel Murphy Mets 2,054,256
5. Chase Utley Phils 1,829,943
6. Dan Uggla Braves 1,606,221
7. Aaron Hill D-backs 1,239,448
8. Neil Walker Pirates 936,072

Click here is the All-Star rosters as listed on MLB.com

Complete coverage on the three Reds All-Stars will be on Reds.com/MLB.com.

Alice Cooper at GABP

Rock legend Alice Cooper is at Great American Ball Park Saturday, ahead of his Sunday concert at Horseshoe Casino. Cooper, a big sports fan, threw out the ceremonial first pitch before the Reds played the Mariners.

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Cooper, who wore No. 18 for his song “I’m 18,” threw a one-hopper to Bronson Arroyo stationed behind the plate. Cooper has always been a big baseball fan.

“I grew up in Detroit and you woke up in the morning and you played baseball every day,” said Cooper, who is now 65 years old. “My room was like a shrine to Al Kaline and those guys, Harvey Kuenn, Charlie Maxwell and all those great Detroit Tigers. Every once in a while, we actually got to go to a game at Briggs Stadium. Baseball was such a big part of my life.

“I moved to Arizona and there was no baseball in Arizona, just the Cactus League. Then we got the Diamondbacks [in 1998) and I finally got a National League team.”

How many ceremonial first pitches has Cooper thrown?

“I haven’t missed many. I would say I’m probably five away from doing almost every one. It’s easy to go out and do songs in front of an audience. In golf, in the Phoenix Open, there are 150,000 people at the tournament every day. You get up on the first tee, I always hit my best drive of the day there. You’re used to playing in front of big audiences. There is an introvert button and an extravert button. When I get in front of people, it goes extravert. Suddenly, my concentration is really good.”

Cooper played golf at Hamilton Elks in Hamilton, Ohio, this morning. Even at 65, he still plays two-hour shows five times a week. He also plays golf nearly every day.

“Sixty-five is the new 30,” Cooper said.

Paul, others out on Saturday

As of 2 p.m. ET Saturday, the Reds and Mariners are scheduled to start on time. It’s not raining for the moment and the tarp is off of the field.

*The field looks to be in good shape after what seems to be days upon days of rain. Reds manager Dusty Baker credited the grounds crew for their efforts. However, Baker decided the field was wet enough that Chris Heisey shouldn’t start in left field. Heisey returned from missing about two months with a right hamstring strain.

Xavier Paul also couldn’t start after banging his right arm on the top of a cement wall in left field foul territory in the top of the ninth inning while chasing down Kyle Seager’s pop up. It looked like he hurt his elbow, but Baker said it was an injured shoulder. Paul is possibly available for pinch-hitting duty. Derrick Robinson, who pinch-hit for Paul in the bottom of the ninth on Friday, is starting in left field on Saturday.

“[Paul] might be available tomorrow,” Baker said. “I’ll go with Robinson today and Heisey tomorrow.”

*On the left side of the infield, Cesar Izturis started in Zack Cozart’s place at shortstop. Jack Hannahan started at third base instead of Todd Frazier.

“It’s not rest as much as these guys need playing time,” Baker said. “It’s not always about rest. It’s about getting guys some at-bats. We’ve got eight games to go [before the All-Star break], they probably won’t get a start maybe. Then we have four days worth of All-Star break. You’re talking two weeks before they get another at-bat or play. If they do get an at-bat, you want them to be halfway comfortable and sharp when they’re doing it.”

*Also, catcher Devin Mesoraco is dealing with back spasms. Ryan Hanigan is starting and catching for Mat Latos. Mesoraco has caught many of Latos’ previous starts.

*At 6:30 p.m. the All-Star Selection Show will begin on FOX. I will have full coverage of the Reds that are selected.

Game 87: at SEA

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Game 86: vs. SEA

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Narron on Bailey

My friend and colleague, MLB.com Brewers beat writer Adam McCalvy had a chat today with bench coach Jerry Narron. Of course, Narron managed the Reds from 2005-07, and it was near the end of his tenure when Homer Bailey debuted in the Majors.

Below is a portion of Adam’s notebook item and I thank him for sending it on.

WASHINGTON — Homer Bailey’s first Major League manager expressed surprise Wednesday that the Reds right-hander has thrown baseball’s last two no-hitters, but that was no knock on Bailey.

“I’m surprised when anybody throws a no-hitter,” said Brewers bench coach Jerry Narron, who has in his final season as Reds skipper when Bailey arrived in 2007. “Two no-hitters? That’s legit.”

Less than 10 months removed from his no-hitter in Pittsburgh last September, Bailey blanked the Giants for nine no-hit innings in a 3-0 win Tuesday night in Cincinnati. He became the first pitcher since fellow Texan Nolan Ryan in 1974 and ’75 to throw two no-hitters without another big league pitcher accomplishing the feat between his. And Bailey joined Mark Buehrle, Roy Halladay and Justin Verlander as the only active pitchers with multiple no-hitters.

A lot has changed in the six years since Bailey was called up to the Reds during a trip to Philadelphia in ’07, a 21-year-old who showed up at the ballpark with a huge hunting knife in a case attached to his belt. He was a former first-round pick with a reputation for being mostly interested in hunting and fishing.

Now he’s a pitcher.

“Very few pitchers come up and really dominate right away,” Narron said. “He was a ‘stuff’ guy, threw hard, but he had to learn how to pitch and get a feel for what he was doing. He’s found it.”

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