Sorry — new lineup is posted without Mesoraco.
Reds rotation candidate Jason Marquis had another decent outing when he started Sunday vs. the Angels.
The Marquis line: 6 ip, 7 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 96 pitches. He is 3-1 with a 3.46 ERA in six spring starts.
“He’s really taken advantage of his opportunity,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “I’m pleased with the way he’s thrown the ball. When he’s been down in the zone with that sinker and slider and split combination, he’s been pretty effective. He had another pretty good start today.”
Marquis gave up a very long two-run home run to left field by CJ Cron in the fourth inning. Overall, he was very pleased with the game.
“After the last outing, I felt pretty good with going deep into games,” Marquis said. “I responded really well after the last start. Today coming in, I didn’t know what my pitch limit was but I felt good enough to treat it like a regular season game. I was glad I was able to get that far.”
A non-roster invite who did not pitch in the Majors last season while trying to return from Tommy John surgery, Marquis’ chances of making the Reds rotation look good at this point. However, he has yet to be given any word from Price or the team.
“I came into this situation knowing anything is possible,” Marquis said. “I had a goal in mind to make the team. When they inform me of that, that’s when you guys find out. I’m excited about any opportunity. I felt like I put myself in a good position to possibly claim one of those spots.”
The Reds will break camp following Thursday’s Cactus League finale vs. the Indians. On Friday and Saturday, will be a pair of exhibition games vs. the Blue Jays in Montreal.
As expected, extra players will be brought along to help fill some of the at-bats and innings when the regulars are taken out.
But will the final 25-man roster be set before it’s wheels up from Arizona?
“Are we going to define? It’s probable that when we leave for Montreal, that guys will know they’re on the team,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “The only caveat, of course, is that in 2012, we got [Alfredo] Simon the day before, or two days before Opening Day on a waiver claim. You just never know in baseball, who is going to become available. If the scouts see someone who can improve our club a day or two, when you find a guy who is available a day or two before Opening Day, anything could happen. Any of these guys who are competing to make a spot on our bench or in the bullpen or the rotation, it can be a little precarious from time to time, because all teams are in the same boat trying to find that last piece that may stabilize their club.”
Have any players battling for spots, especially the non-roster invites, been told they made the team already?
“No. We have not,” Price replied.
Here is an updated Reds lineup:
M. Smith DH
While the headline above might likely raise a eyebrow or two, the grand experiment to try and put Aroldis Chapman in the Reds rotation again isn’t happening. Chapman is slated to start on Saturday vs. a Cubs split-squad club though.
Manager Bryan Price explains the decision to start with his closer.
“We have [Mike] Leake scheduled to pitch tomorrow in a Minor League game, so we’ll get our relief pitchers out of the way first,” Price said. “Then, I’m sure we’ll have some Minor Leaguers come up to pitch, to make up for the innings we’re not going to get from Leaker.”
Facing Minor League batters for the second time in spring on Friday, Reds pitcher Homer Bailey worked three innings in a Triple-A game.
Bailey allowed one earned run and three hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Of his 41 pitches, 25 were strikes.
In a Double-A game, Johnny Cueto pitched five innings with two earned runs and five hits, no walks, four strikeouts and one wild pitch. He threw 60 pitches/47 strikes.
More on Reds.com/MLB.com later.
Also today: Homer Bailey is starting in a Triple-A game and Johnny Cueto is starting a Double-A game and will throw to Tucker Barnhart. Both games are vs. Dodgers Minor Leaguers.