Results tagged ‘ Jordan Smith ’

Cabrera activated, two call-ups

*The Reds activated SS Orlando Cabrera today from the 15-day disabled list and recalled LHP Matt Maloney and RHP Jordan Smith from Triple-A Louisville.

*Cabrera hasn’t played for the Reds since straining his left oblique on Aug. 2.

*Smith didn’t fare all that well at Louisville but it was a small sample: (3g, 8.10, 3.1 ip, 3 ER, 1 HR, 1 BB, 0k)

*Maloney last pitched on Tuesday for the Bats. It was an abbreviated three-inning start where he allowed one run and four hits with no walks and three strikeouts.


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Edmonds to DL, Smith to AAA

The moves are official — INF Chris Valaika and RHP Sam LeCure were called up from Triple-A Louisville.

OF Jim Edmonds was placed on the 15-day DL with a strained right oblique.

RHP Jordan Smith was optioned to Louisville.

Valaika will wear No. 3.(118g, .304, 28 2b, 3 3b, 4hr, 53rbi, 3sb)

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Postgame: Transactions coming?

The transaction wire should be active with Reds moves on Tuesday following a lousy night at the yard — an 11-2 Reds loss to the Giants.

*Laynce Nix went down with a sprained left ankle running out an infield single in the third inning.

*Jim Edmonds strained a right oblique muscle swinging at a pitch in the sixth.
*The club also learned that already injured RHP Russ Springer will need surgery to repair a herniated disc and will miss 6-8 weeks.

Nix didn’t believe he was going to miss any games.

“Slowing down, I sort of jammed my ankle into the ground,” Nix said. “I didn’t roll it or anything too significant. I don’t think it’s serious. It shouldn’t keep me out of action. I should be fine to at least pinch-hit.”

Edmonds, who was acquired in an Aug. 9 trade, is likely headed to the DL.

“This has been an ongoing deal with my Achilles and reacting to all the things I’ve been favoring,” Edmonds said. “It’s been sore the last week or two weeks. It was getting worse. The last couple of days not playing much, I thought it was going to get better. It gave me a false sense of security.”

*The Reds have no other outfielders on their 40-man roster but can free up a spot by moving Springer from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL. Wladimir Balentien could be a leading candidate since he’s tearing it up at Triple-A Louisville lately. Dave Sappelt is also playing well but has only 11 games in AAA and started the year in A ball.

*An infielder is always possible with Juan Francisco or Yonder Alonso already being on the 40-man.

*Edinson Volquez’s two-thirds of an inning was a bullpen buster as well, especially two days after Johnny Cueto lasted only three innings at Los Angeles on Saturday. Jordan Smith had to pitch a career-high 4 1/3 innings. Mike Leake was unavailable tonight because he worked on Saturday.

*That means another reliever could be summoned for reinforcements.

“We’re discussing that now. That really put a strain and stress on my bullpen,” Dusty Baker said.

More quotes from post-game —

“The main thing is for nobody to panic. It’s one game. You want to win every game. At this point we’re 5-2 on this road trip with two more games left. We still have a chance for a very good road trip.” – Dusty Baker

“A lot of people told me that – one day you got it and the next day, you can’t find it. Everything is fine. My arm is strong and everything.” — Edinson Volquez

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Postgame quote parade

It was another game from the bizarro world as the Reds lost 3-1 to the Cubs. Why was it a little weird, you ask?

*The Cubs tied a franchise record by stranding 17 men on base. They were 3-for-16 RISP and still won.

*Johnny Cueto walked five and allowed seven hits but had five scoreless innings while throwing 101 pitches. His ERA in his last four starts is 0.70.

*Randy Wells no-hit the Reds for six innings until Chris Heisey’s leadoff single in the seventh. Of course, he was mired in a scoreless tie until the top of the sixth.

Quotes —

“He had trouble getting strike one. That was the problem. He threw a lot of near-strikes. Ramon said he was not missing by much, especially on the inside.  But they were balls. They weren’t going for him. Usually he can spot that inside fastball with a lot of efficiency.” — Dusty Baker on Johnny Cueto.

“It’s one of those days I didn’t have it. I made a few pitches over the heart of the plate. They got a few key hits that blooped in. I hit a batter and walked one. It just wasn’t my day.” — Reliever Jordan Smith, who gave up three runs in the sixth after Cueto departed.

“Thank God, I put the ball in play and nobody caught it.” — Cubs LF Alfonso Soriano, who broke the scoreless tie in the sixth with a blooped single that dropped in front of diving center fielder Chris Heisey.

“We had people on. We got three of them in and won a baseball game. Let’s be happy with that.” — Cubs manager Lou Piniella.

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Postgame extra: Homer happier

I am writing this entry from a BART train headed back to San Francisco. If I didn’t leave when I did, I might have had to spend the night in the ballpark…no thanks.

That was one wild (late) night of baseball — a 6-4 Reds win in 10 innings.

The good —

*The bats finally came alive, albeit late. The three homers in the 10th by Ramon Hernandez, Joey Votto and Scott Rolen were the first long balls in a 39-inning span since Thursday. The Reds had also scored only three runs in the 39 innings entering the 10th.

*Jay Bruce had a PH single after sat most of the game. Bruce was in a 4-for-25 skid.

*Nick Masset had shutdown stuff tonight and pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings.

*Jordan Smith picked up his first save in the Majors when he got the final two outs of the Oakland 10th.

*The Reds tied a franchise record with their eighth-straigtht extra-innings win on the road, dating back to last season.

*Dusty Baker won his 1,352nd career game, which ties him with Chuck Tanner for 26th all-time.

The not-so-good —

*The three homers and Smith’s save wouldn’t have been needed if closer Francisco Cordero did the job in the bottom of the ninth. Cordero’s first-pitch homer to leadoff batter Kevin Kouzmanoff gave him five blown saves in 22 chances. He had four blown saves in 43 chances last season.

*The game nearly got away again in the 10th after Cordero walked his first two batters.

Some quotes —

“It seems like when your bats are sick, everybody’s bats are sick. When your bats get well, it seems like everybody’s bats get well at the same time.” — manager Dusty Baker

“We lead the league in all of those offensive categories for a reason. We know we can hit. We’ve had some bad luck and bad draws with the opposing pitching. But we have to beat good pitchers to be the team we want to be. We hit a lull the last couple of days but we’re fine.” — Jay Bruce.

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Postgame, not much extra

It’s already nearing 2 a.m. ET and there really isn’t a whole of good or not-so-good to breakdown from a 12-0 beat down of the Reds by the Dodgers.

Here are some quotes:

“The main thing is we just have to forget this game. We need a good pitched game tomorrow, definitely. We used Micah for a lot of pitches from the bullpen tonight and used Daniel for a lot of pitches. Hopefully we can jump on Kershaw tomorrow.” — Dusty Baker

“I didn’t feel like I could get into a rhythm. I’d get two strikes on them and I couldn’t find that pitch to put them away. When you throw a lot of pitches in the first inning, it’s going to wear on you, especially when it’s as warm and muggy as it was.” — Aaron Harang

Harang threw 42 pitches and faced eight hitters during a three-run Dodgers first inning.

It was another bad night for the bullpen but Jordan Smith made his MLB debut in the ninth inning and did his part by not making the bad game any worse. Smith pitched a scoreless inning with only a two-out double allowed.

“He threw strikes and had good velocity and movement,” Baker said. “That’s what we remember of him from spring training. Hopefully, he can help us.”

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Smith up, Del Rosario down

In an effort to get bullpen help, the Reds reached down to Double-A Carolina and called up RHP Jordan Smith on Tuesday. Enerio Del Rosario was optioned to Triple-A Louisville.

At 1-3 with a 5.08 ERA in 27 games with 38 hits allowed over 28 1/3 innings, Smith’s numbers don’t look all that impressive but is a hot hand right now. In his last six appearances for Carolina, Smith posted a 1.13era (8ip, 1er). Dusty Baker also liked Smith in Spring Training.

Del Rosario had a 2.08 ERA in nine games but allowed seven of his nine inherited runners to score. Not good.

*Before this season, Smith had 74 Minor League games since he was drafted in 2006 — all were as a starting pitcher. The Reds told Smith he was becoming a reliever in Spring Training. Much of lofty numbers might reflect the adjustment.

Smith felt he was starting clicking once he improved his pitch selection and not just offering a first-pitch fastball.

“Since I’ve taken on the reliever role, I had to adjust my game just a little bit – different pitches at certain times,” Smith said. “I was trying to be too aggressive with my fastball at certain points. If you look at my hits, if you were there, probably half of those hits were infield hits, bloop hits that I was kind of getting unlucky. I started getting into a rhythm a couple of weeks ago and kept the ball down real good and it was moving. I feel better now.”

Smith got the good news of his first big league promotion from Carolina manager David Bell. He was napping and missed the call and had to call back.

“I called him back and he said ‘I have some good news but I can’t tell you over the phone. I have to tell you in person,'” Smith said. “I actually met him at a bank close to my apartment in Carolina. I got out of my truck and he said ‘you’re going to the big leagues.’ It was one of the most exciting feelings I’ve ever had. It was great.

“It’s starting to sink in now that I’m here. Yesterday, I couldn’t sit down. I was pacing so much. I couldn’t sleep. I finally fell asleep at six in the morning and woke up at seven to pack my stuff up in the clubhouse. I’m running on adrenaline right now.”

*Here’s what Dusty Baker said about Smith:

“We liked him at spring training. David Bell said he was throwing the ball real well, especially lately. We don’t know if this is temporary or permanent. It depends on him and depends on how we might revamp our rotation some in order to strengthen our bullpen some. We’re still at the drawing board on some of that stuff.”

My hunch is they’re considering either Sam LeCure or Homer Bailey for that spot. I asked Baker what options were on the table though.

“I can’t tell you that. We’ll see,” Baker said. “Some depends on how Smith fits in. Most of the pitchers are going six and a fraction. That seventh inning, it’s so very important. We’re looking for somebody to close that gap there. [Logan] Ondrusek has done a good job closing the gap but he can’t do it by himself.”

*Brandon Phillips was back in the lineup after being diagnosed on Monday with a mild strain of his right hamstring. Phillips came in during the off day for treatment and it didn’t take any great lobbying to get back in the lineup after being scratched Sunday.

“He came in with the trainer,” Baker said. “A lot of it depends on what the trainer says. He says he

was feeling a whole lot better. He was playing with this for a while. I told him to just play smart, that’s all.”

*Ryan Hanigan took batting practice with the pitchers today and had no trouble. But trying to catch has still been a problem.

“It’s getting better but it [the thumb] still rattles when I catch,” Hanigan said. He has not been able to fit a pad into the thumb of his mitt that works. He was hoping the pain would subside to in a few more days to where it only hurts when he catches a ball in the wrong spot.


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Good Monday morning

Greetings — here is the Reds lineup vs. the A’s.

Reds lineup:

Dickerson 8
Cabrera 6
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Nix 9
Francisco DH
Miles 4
Castillo 2

Lincoln 1

Manager Dusty Baker was still thinking about the end of Sunday’s game when he watched Jordan Smith blow a 5-1 lead after getting the first two outs in the top of the ninth vs. the White Sox. Chicago notched four hits and four runs and the game ended in a 5-5 tie.

“It was like watching a kid get beat up,” Baker said. “You want him to learn a lesson from it but you don’t want him to get beat up too badly.”

A couple of times, Smith was one strike away from ending the game.

“It was his game. We didn’t have anybody warming up. You learn more from bad outings than you do good ones.”

Smith, drafted in the sixth round of the 2006 Draft, has been a starter his entire time in the organization. But Baker sees Smith transitioning to a reliever, possibly a closer down the road. Smith was given chances to finish Friday’s game vs. the Dodgers too.

“He has a really good sinker and he’s working on a better slider and off-speed pitch,” Baker said. “He’s got one of the heaviest sinkers in camp.”

Smith will be on the bus trip to Tucson when the Reds face the Diamondbacks.

“I think he’s got the stuff,” Baker said. “This is when you find out what a kid is made of. It’s difficult to do. The biggest thing in the life of a reliever is to forget yesterday. That’s the toughest lesson to learn.”

Both Mike Leake and Travis Wood are scheduled to see action today vs. Oakland. Both have had sensational springs to this point but have been seen as only outside contenders for the fifth spot on the rotation. Baker was asked if either of them had legitimate chances.

“I don’t know,” Baker said. “This is Leake’s first Spring Training, period, and Wood’s first Major League Spring Training. It’s like pitch first and then we’ll see what’s happening. Don’t worry about making the team. Don’t worry about not making the team. Don’t worry about nothing. Just pitch. That’s what they’re doing.

“If they’re not here when we break, they’ll be here pretty soon. If they keep pitching like they’re pitching, they’ll be here sooner than most of us probably think about, if there’s room or if other guys aren’t doing the job, different variables.”

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Yes — other pitchers threw too

With all of the hoopla about Aroldis Chapman, you might have wondered if anyone else pitched on Wednesday. They certainly did.

On the field I was watching, I saw Carlos Fisher, Jordan Smith, Logan Ondrusek, Phillipe Valiquette and Pedro Viola. On the other field included Mike Leake, Sam LeCure, Matt Maloney. I heard that Jonny Gomes took Leake deep with a homer. But I don’t believe anyone else left the field with one.

Ondrusek is listed as 6-foot-8 but looks much taller in person and was definitely more imposing from the mound. I had never seen Valiquette before — he was a very hard-throwing lefty pitcher.

“I like the fact that everybody was around the plate,” pitching coach Bryan Price said. “These guys showed up to compete for jobs on the team. That’s been very apparent from the first workout. Guys seem to have an idea that they need to come in commanding their stuff with their arms in good shape. They’ve done that instead of trying to impress by overthrowing or doing things that get you into trouble. This is a pretty polished group.”

Like mentioned in the previous post, Price had pitchers not use a screen. He didn’t want them to get into a bad habit by changing delivery to drop behind it. It only became an issue once when Chris Heisey hit a screamer off of Smith’s leg. Smith was able to continue pitching.

Among the other hitters I watched — Todd Frazier, Juan Francisco and Yonder Alonso. It’s hard to gauge how they did. They really were at a disadvantage so early in camp. Some had some good hits, including Alonso that last few swings in the cage. 

One other quirky moment happened during fielding drills. On a bunt play with Chapman on the mound, the catched yelled “three” meaning Chapman was supposed to throw to third base. But with the language barrier, he didn’t understand. He was told three meant “tres” and got the play right on the next try.

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