Results tagged ‘ Juan Francisco ’

Surgery for Rolen


Reds third baseman Scott Rolen underwent arthroscopic surgery on Wednesday that, according to the club, removed bone spurs fragments from the acromioclavicular joint in his left shoulder.

Team medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek performed the procedure. A full recovery is expected and Rolen is expected to miss an additional 4-6 weeks. He has been on the DL since July 22.

Juan Francisco is currently on a rehab assignment with the AZL Reds in Goodyear where has gone 5-for-10 in three games. Francisco torn the meniscus in his right knee in early July and had surgery. You have to wonder if he will get summoned if and when he is ready. He’s always been injured at the same time as Rolen and has missed windows of opportunity to play in the Majors.

Phillips at cleanup

Reds lineup vs Cardinals

Heisey 8
Renteria 6
Votto 3
Phillips 4
Bruce 9
Rolen 5
Lewis 7
Hanigan 2
Arroyo 1

*The last time Phillips batted fourth was May 23 at Philadelphia. In his previous stint there this season, the Reds went 15-12 while Phillips batted .291 (30-for-103) with three homers and 20 RBIs.

*This is the second time in four games Stubbs is taking a seat. Last night, he was 0-for-4 with a walk and four strikeouts.

*At Triple-A Louisville, 3B Juan Francisco was placed on the DL with a right knee meniscus tear. The move is retroactive to Monday.

Lineup, Hermida called up

Reds lineup vs. Pirates

Stubbs 8
Renteria 6
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Bruce 9
Cairo 4
Hanigan 2
Wood 1

Some transactions —  3B Juan Francisco was placed on the 15-day DL with a strained left calf. RHP Jared Burton (rt shoulder inflammation) was moved to the 60-day DL. OF Jeremy Hermida had his contract selected from Triple-A Louisville. He will wear No. 26.

You may remember that Hermida had a good spring but was one of the final cuts. He batted .342 with three homers and six RBIs during camp. With Louisville, he batted .333/.405/.606 with two homers and nine RBIs.

Thursday afternoon notes

Today was day two of the live BP between Reds pitchers and Reds hitters.

Among those that threw included Dontrelle Willis, Francisco Cordero, Johnny Cueto, Bronson Arroyo, Edinson Volquez, Nick Masset and Jose Arredondo. Willis threw well and at one point struck out Yonder Alonso with a pretty nifty curveball.

Drew Stubbs cleared the fence hitting against Arroyo. Todd Frazier took Cueto deep over the left-center field wall with a hearty blast. Juan Francisco hit a booming homer to right field against Volquez.

Being so early in camp, don’t read too much into the results — positive or negative. Some of the hitters in were told what pitches were coming by the pitchers. It’s purely a get work in session under simulated game conditions.

I tried to get video of live BP today and yesterday but the quality was poor. I flunked out of videographer school.

*Other drills included pitchers fielding their position and throwing to different bases based on varying situations devised by coach Chris Speier.

*It was reported, and I confirmed, that 1B prospect Yonder Alonso switched agents recently. Alonso is now represented by Dan Lozano, who also happens to be the agent for Joey Votto.

*Speaking of Votto, he was feeling under the weather yesterday and not so great today with an upper respiratory issue. However, Votto was cleared to participate in the workout after being seen by the medical staff.

*For stories — there will be a feature on outfield prospect Dave Sappelt. He moved quickly last season and earned two promotions and ended in Triple-A — partially on need but mostly because of performance.

“He’s a very exciting player,” Triple-A Louisville manager Rick Sweet said. “He’s aggressive. He swings the bat, puts the ball in play and runs. I would say the biggest thing is he creates havoc. He makes things happen. One thing about him is he’s not a low-key sit back and watch the at-bat player. He knows what he’s going to do and what’s going to happen.”

*In yesterday’s live BP, Jerry Gil’s velocity was hard not to notice. Gil, the former infielder that converted to pitching in 2008, can reach 97 mph.

“I feel way better than when I started pitching my first couple of years,” Gil said on Thursday. “I felt like my arm was going to fall apart. It hurt a lot in the beginning. But I got used to it and now I feel better. I thought pitching would be easy but it’s not that easy. You have to work hard.”

*Infielder Chris Valaika is trying to make the club as an extra player. Sitting on a bench could hamper his overal development if he’s not hitting every day, but Valaika felt it was something he could handle.

“That’s definitely a tradeoff,” Valaika said. “Getting your at-bats and playing every day is important for development. But just being in the big leagues and learning from Edgar [Renteria] and Miguel [Cairo] – guys that have been there and done that – I think that’s important as well.”

I’m getting an off day on Friday and will not be around the complex. Be sure to check for stories from colleague Barry Bloom, who will be on the case.

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Francisco makes NLDS roster

It looks like Jim Edmonds and his sore right Achilles tendon weren’t well enough to go. Juan Francisco got the final spot on the 25-man roster. While Francisco has great power, they lose a ton of playoff experience without Edmonds.

12pm update — I thought about this more as I ate two pretty greasy slices of pizza at the Reading Terminal. Losing Edmonds hurts the Reds indeed — he has 230 postseason ABs compared to zero for Francisco (only 73 big league ABs overall). But it doesn’t have to be a critical blow to the Reds hopes. If you need a silver lining, Francisco could be pretty capable of changing a game with a big home run. You want pinch-hitters that are aggressive swingers in the late innings and no one would accuse Francisco of being a shrinking violet in the batters’ box.

More later when I get to the ballpark.

Here is the roster breakdown:

Catchers (2) – Ramon Hernandez, Ryan Hanigan

Infielders (7)  — Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, Orlando Cabrera, Scott Rolen, Miguel Cairo, Paul Janish, Juan Francisco

Outfielders (5) – Jay Bruce, Drew Stubbs, Jonny Gomes, Chris Heisey, Laynce Nix 

Starting pitchers (3) – Edinson Volquez, Bronson Arroyo, Johnny Cueto

Bullpen (8) – Francisco Cordero, Arthur Rhodes, Nick Masset, Aroldis Chapman, Logan Ondrusek, Bill Bray, Homer Bailey, Travis Wood.

Who is that guy at 2B?

Sunday lineup vs. FLA

Phillips 4
Bruce 9
Votto 3
Gomes 7
Edmonds 8
Cairo 5
Hanigan 2
Janish 6
Bailey 1

*To make room for Homer Bailey’s activation on the 25-man roster, the Reds optioned 3B Juan Francisco to Triple-A Louisville. That, of course, left the Reds with one spare infielder. To get some protection, they’ve had outfielder Chris Heisey working out in the infield lately, especially at second base.

“I haven’t taken groundballs in about a week but I’m going to go out there in a little bit and take some grounders,” Heisey said Sunday morning. “It’s in case of emergency. I’ve played shortstop my whole life and then in college, the second half of my junior year was spent at shortstop. I’m would not say I’m comfortable in the infield, but I don’t feel like a stranger. I trust my hand-eye coordination and reflexes enough to at least knock the ball down and throw it across the infield.”

*As I type this, Heisey is taking grounders from Chris Speier and practicing flips to second base.

“Anybody else – I can move Brandon to shortstop, Cairo to here to there. Scotty can play third base or first base if something happened to Joey,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “You start thinking of different scenarios. If something happened seriously, we’d have to get somebody in here. Whatever it is, it’d be a stopgap situation until we got somebody in here.”

*Back in 2008 when they were shorthanded, the Reds had to use catcher Javy Valentin for an entire game and part of one other at third base. The funny thing is, Valentin never had one ball hit to him. So much for the ball finding him.

*LHP Travis Wood had a two-inning start for Louisville at Columbus last night. Why two innings? It wasn’t an injury but a tune-up to get him ready for his next start in Cincinnati. The Reds still list Thursday’s starter at Arizona as TBA. Wood is eligible to return by then. Incidentally, Wood worked scoreless last night with three hits and a walk. He struck out two during the Bats’ 1-0 loss to Columbus.

*Baker has been playing the Van Morrison album “Too Long in Exile”  the last couple of days while he’s been suspended.

“I broke it out,” Baker said. “That’s how I felt.”

*And here is a compliment from one of the Marlins about the Red the last two games.

“I give the Reds credit,” ourfielder Cody Ross said. “They’re not running slop out there. They pitch well, play great defense. Brandon Phillips is everywhere. I hit to the right, he’s there. I hit the ball up the middle he’s there. They must have the perfect scouting report on us.”

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Reds, Mariners not serious yet

It appears that discussions between the Reds and Mariners about pitcher Cliff Lee have yet to hit the serious stages.A baseball source told Thursday that no formal proposals have been exchanged between the two teams.

“It’s just been the parameters and the types of players that they are looking for or not looking for,” the source said. “It’s been quiet lately.”

The first-place Reds are one of several teams in the hunt for the left-handed Lee, an ace-quality starting pitcher, who is earning $8 million this season with Seattle. He would essentially be a “rent-a-player” for Cincinnati since he can become a free agent at season’s end.

It’s been widely reported that the Mariners are seeking multiple big league ready prospects, which is an area where the Reds have some chips they could deal. Triple-A Louisville first baseman Yonder Alonso is blocked in the Majors by Joey Votto and Alonso’s teammate, third baseman Juan Francisco, is blocked by Scott Rolen.

The Reds also have young left-handed pitchers like Travis Wood and Matt Maloney, who have both recently been called up.

Laynce Nix update

Outfielder and left-handed bench player Laynce Nix is unlikely to be available tonight or will only be used in a “dire emergency,” as manager Dusty Baker called it. Baker still wasn’t saying what Nix’s injury was and neither was Nix.

“It’s just a tight muscle hindering me from playing,” Nix said. “I will be back in a couple of days. It’s nothing too serious. I haven’t been able to swing that bat but it’s getting a lot better.”

Baker said he didn’t anticpate making a roster move. Besides, there really are no left-handed hitters at Triple-A Louisville. Danny Dorn just broke his hand and Juan Francisco is out for four weeks after his appendectomy. Yonder Alonso was just moved up from Double-A to take Dorn’s place.

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Francisco tried at 1B

The Reds have tried to move prospect Juan Francisco to positions other than his natural third base spot. First it was left field on March 16 and today in the fifth inning, Francisco appeared at first base for the first time this spring.

Total number of balls hit Francisco’s way in the opportunities: zero. He did receive the ball a few times on throws to first.

Francisco, who never played first base in the Minors, is trying to land one of the extra spots on the Reds bench. He was 0-for-2 and struck out in the eighth while swinging way in front of a breaking pitch.

“We’re trying to move him around and get him acclimated just in case,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “We still have plenty of outfielders here. Until we make a move, we’ll see. We’re just weighing as many options as we can.”

In 18 games, Francisco is batting .300 (12-for-40) with two homers and five RBIs.

*It was a rough day of pitching during an 8-1 loss to the Cubs, which slugged three home runs. Three pitchers trying to nab one of the final bullpen spots particularly stumbled.

*Carlos Fisher started and gave up five hits and three runs in 1 2/3 innings, including Marlon Byrd’s two-run shot in the Cubs’ first inning. In the seventh, Kip Wells gave up two runs and two hits, hit a batter and walked in a run with the bases loaded. In the eighth, Matt Maloney gave up three hits and three runs, including two homers.

“We got beat up pretty good today,” Baker said.

*Justin Lehr had two very strong scoreless innings with no hits, one walk and three strikeouts.

“He looked pretty good. He had them off-speed, showed good control,” Baker said.

Lehr’s  chances of making the rotation are likely kaput and he’s still trying to make the bullpen. He hasn’t disappointed, however, with a 3.14 ERA in seven games, including one start. He’s walked five and struck out five.

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No LF chances for Francisco

The Reds hoped they could get Juan Francisco into left field to see what he can do. They’re still hoping.

During Tuesday’s 13-7 win over Arizona, Francisco didn’t get any chances. In the first inning, he nearly fell over a railing trying for a foul ball out of play. But that was it.

“Of course. Isn’t that how it goes?” manager Dusty Baker said. “We saw that wind blowing out there and said ‘oh Lord, this is not the day to break him in left field.”

Baker said Francisco would get another chance to play left field but didn’t know when. Offensively, Francisco was 1-for-3 with a RBI single in the first inning. He also grounded out twice.

All three at-bats ended after the first pitch.

“That’s who he is right now,” Baker said. “That’s the only thing we’re afraid of when the word gets around about pitch selection. You’d rather have a guy you have to calm down than a young man you have to prod to swing. He’s aggressive.”

Other post-game notes:

*The Reds have scored 31 runs over their last three games, including 13-spots two days in a row.  They are 5-1-1 over their last seven games. Not that it means anything.

*Jay Bruce was 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Taking advantage of a 19 mph wind blowing to left field, Bruce went opposite field twice — with a RBI double in the first inning and a home run in the second. Bruce is 9-for-23 (.391) this spring.

“We had some guys swinging the bat great. Jay Bruce has his stroke going pretty good,” Baker said. “It’s fun to see this early. We got some timely hits.”

*Drew Stubbs was 2-for-3 with a double and two-run triple. Check out the full story on him on later. 

*In the young pitcher department, Logan Ondrusek’s nice spring continued with 1 1/3 scoreless innings and two strikeouts. Ondrusek has been perfect over his 3 1/3 innings in three outings. He took over today for lefty Philippe Valiquette, who allowed three earned runs and two hits over his one inning. Valiquette also hit two batters in a row.

“Once he gets control of the strike zone and tightens up his breaking ball a little bit…he’s got big league stuff but right now, minor league command. He’s going to be a very good pitcher,” Baker said.

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