Not pretty, but four wins in a row
After losing five in a row and 10 of 11, the Reds have now broke off four-straight victories. The latest came on Sunday when they held on for a 7-6 win over the A’s. Cincinnati is now 8-12 for spring.
“It wasn’t a great game but it was still nice to win,” manager Bryan Price said.
Some of the items of note:
*With two outs in the first inning, Derek Norris hit a pop-up in foul territory near the first base dugout. Joey Votto and Devin Mesoraco converged and Mesoraco dropped the ball for an error. Norris then hit a two-run double for two unearned runs.
*Tony Cingrani didn’t get through the fifth after two walks, a run-scoring balk and a wild pitch in the inning.
*Votto, who entered the day batting .214 this spring, connected for his first home run of spring. He took pitcher Sonny Gray the opposite way on a 2-2 pitch in the first inning for a solo shot over the left field fence.
*Another nice bunt for Billy Hamilton, who pushed one past the mound on the first base for a single in the seventh. Hamilton stole both second and third base to set up what would be the winning moment in a 5-5 game.
*That came from Brandon Phillips, who hit a two-run homer to left field off Josh Lindblom. Phillips entered the at-bat with a .133 average this spring.
*Following a couple of less-than-smooth outings, RHP Logan Ondrusek provided a perfect eighth inning.
*The full game story will be on Reds.com/MLB.com. I will have more on Cingrani’s outing in my daily notebook on the web site as well.
*For today’s feature, I wrote about RHP Nick Christiani’s bid to make the Reds bullpen. Things are going well.
*Utility infielder candidate Chris Nelson got some time at first base after Votto departed. Nelson was working out at first base during the morning drills along with Votto and Neftali Soto. I watched all three do a drill where coach Jay Bell threw balls in the dirt to first base for them to scoop. During the final round of throws, the trio successfully scooped all 15 throws from Bell.
*First pitch temperature in Goodyear: 75 degrees.