Extra notes from first game
New manager Bryan Price has a 1-0 record in the Cactus League following an 8-3 Reds win over the Indians on Wednesday. Click here for the game story.
Here are some items of note from the day:
*Billy Hamilton had a nice first plate appearance as the leadoff hitter, and provided a possible glimpse of the fits he could give opponents this season. Hamilton worked a 10-pitch walk. Before the next pitch to Brandon Phillips, he stole second base and moved to third base on catcher Yan Gomes’ throwing error. Hamilton would be stranded at third base, however.
“He really had to battle,” Price said. “He fought off some tough pitches and got on base and kind of set the table for us.”
*Hamilton’s third plate appearance in the top of the fifth was a bunt. But it was too hard on the ground right to the first baseman for the out.
*Phillips appeared to be favoring his left thumb somewhat after sliding into second base during a failed steal attempt in the top of the first inning. Trainer Paul Lessard emerged from the dugout briefly in the bottom of the first but did not go out to look at Phillips.
“He kind of bent his fingernail back, his thumb back a little bit but didn’t have any complaints,” Price said. “We’ll certainly follow up and check in on him when we get inside but I think he’s fine.”
*Alfredo Simon threw two scoreless and hitless innings with one walk in a smooth first start.
“All of my pitches were working really good,” Simon said. “I just tried to throw the first pitch for a strike and then keep going. I worked on my two-seamer. It was working really good.”
*For his at-bats, Joey Votto asked the Goodyear Ballpark people to play new walk-up music — specifically Todd Frazier’s usual Frank Sinatra music. Instead of the Rolling Stones’ “Paint it Black,” “Fly me to the Moon” was played. Before the first AB, Votto stepped out of the box to let the music play longer and pointed to Frazier.
“I’m going to talk to him about that,” Frazier said later.
*Johnny Cueto is all set to make his spring debut on Thursday vs. Cleveland. Because of the injury issues Cueto had last year, there might be some extra eyes on him.
“He came into camp healthy and we’re all optimistic he will have a healthy season and pitch well all year,” Price said. “But because he’s had some setbacks and his history here with the Reds, there certainly will be a collective sigh of relief when we get through Spring Training and he’s locked in doing what he does. We’re like every other team. You’re always an injury away from having to remap your rotation or your starting lineup.”
*Former Red Scott Rolen surfaced today at the Phillies-Blue Jays game in Clearwater, Fla. In this story with our Paul Hagen, Rolen says he misses playing but isn’t formally retired. Earlier this week, we learned that the Reds have reached out to Rolen to be a guest instructor.