Results tagged ‘ Laynce Nix ’

Jay Bruce at the podium

Before sending the transcript of Jay Bruce’s press conference, two notes:

*Dusty Baker said that Laynce Nix will start Game 2 in left field for Jonny Gomes. Against Roy Oswalt, Nix is 9-for-17 (.529) in his career against Oswalt with three doubles, one triple and two home runs with four RBIs. 

*Ryan Hanigan will be behind the plate catching Bronson Arroyo, which he has done most of the regular season.

And now….Jay Bruce.

Q.  For most of the time that you’ve been with the Reds all you got to hear is how many games in a row Roy Oswalt beat your team.  Now you’ve had success with him lately.  Was there something you had to do as a group to knock off that aura of invisibility?

 JAY BRUCE:  You know what, I don’t think so.  I think the bottom line is we’re a different team this year.  And the fact that we have an approach that we have figured out that works for us, and that we’re able to execute.
 You know, I think numbers have something to do with it too.  We faced him, he beat us 20 times.  I mean, it was almost, you know, time was on our side, I think, and the numbers were on our side a little bit.
 But I think the biggest thing is the execution factor and the fact that we have an approach that works and that works consistently.  It’s shown all year that we led the National League in hitting.  So I think that that speaks volumes as well.

 Q.  Your success actually dates back to the year before.  Does the same approach, the same reasoning, the same logic apply for ’09?

 JAY BRUCE:  Asking about Roy?  Yeah.  It’s sticking with the consistent approach.  Consistency in baseball is what makes you successful over a certain period of time, and I think that’s something that we’ve really, really tried to work on, and really tried to practice as a team and as individuals.  I think that’s definitely spoken about our success.

 Q.  Given how Game 1 went, do you like the off day between 1 and 2?  Would you have rather gotten right back out there to get back on the field for Game 2?  Do you have a preference?

 JAY BRUCE:  No preference for me.  That is the way that MLB wants to do it and it works out the best.  The Phillies obviously got to pick the extra day in between.  So that’s what they went with, it doesn’t matter to me at all, no.

 Q.  What was it like last night?  Did you guys relive it, rehash it?  What’s it been like today that you’ve been together sort of being on the other end of history?

 JAY BRUCE:  I can only speak for myself, but I just have to chalk it up.  I mean, he pitched one of the best games of his life and he did something really, really special.  But like I said last night, I’m not taking anything away from Roy, because he is probably the best pitcher in the game, has the best stuff.  But we have to look at it as a loss.
 We can come back out and tie the series tomorrow.  And in the scheme of things, that no hitter means nothing other than we got beat the first game.

 Q.  How are you going about, again, from the mindset in terms of maybe what you guys are saying to each other, what Dusty is saying to you in terms of being able to come back and rebound from that no hitter against a guy like Oswalt?

 JAY BRUCE:  In my opinion, there is really nothing to be said as far as the no hitter is concerned.  It happened, it’s history now, and we’ve been bouncing back all year.  You know, that is the bottom line is we have to bounce back or we’re not going to be here very long.  It’s not going to be a very long series.
 The Phillies are a tremendous team.  They do everything well.  They create runs.  The pitching is top of the line.  But we’re good too.  We led the league in hitting and that’s something that we’re proud of, and we’re a good team or else we wouldn’t be here and we have to bounce back.
 That is another characteristic of a good team, I believe, too.  We have to do that, and continue to focus on tomorrow’s game and forget about yesterday’s game.

 Q.  It’s Bronson on Friday.  He’s got more experience than some of the other pitchers.  How much do you lean on him and what is the team’s confidence in him after how Game 1 went?
 
 JAY BRUCE:  I think pitching is definitely going to determine the success of our teams, both teams.  If they don’t pitch well, they’re not going to be successful.  If we don’t pitch well, we’re not going to be successful.  But it’s a collective effort, and it’s a 25 man team, and we have the guys here to do it.
 You know, the pitcher’s job, in my opinion, is to keep the team in the game.  It’s not to throw a no hitter or shut a team out.  It’s to keep the team in the game, and that’s what we’re hoping he does.  He does a great job of that every year.  He’s been doing that since he got in the big leagues and we’re confident in him.

 Q.  Can you talk about Brook Jacoby and what effect he’s had on you since he’s been with the Reds?

 JAY BRUCE:  Tell you what, Brook has been great for me.  He’s done his job.  He works well with each individual.  He doesn’t try to do or put a blanket system on everyone.  And I think that’s huge.  At the end of the day in the Major Leagues you’re coaching and you’re interacting with people.  It’s not necessarily all the time teaching mechanics and doing this and doing that.  It’s having a relationship with people.  He does a great job of that.
 Also, he’s consistent in his approach.  He has something that he thinks works for everyone, and that’s something that’s shown true this year because we’ve had a successful year hitting.
 Like I said, he’s the same guy every day.  He’s very positive.  He keeps it loose, and he’s there for you.  He’s really there for the player, and that is something that is important, too.

Cabrera to return Saturday

Fri lineup vs. MIL

Stubbs 8
Phillips 4
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Bruce 9
Hernandez 2
Janish 6
Wood 1

*SS Orlando Cabrera didn’t start for the third game in a row. He is trying to keep his tender left oblique muscle from barking. He did pinch-hit on Wednesday and he plans to play Saturday and Sunday.

“I just want to be as close to 100 percent as possible for the first game on Wednesday,” Cabrera said. “Because it was hurting me, once we clinched I told Dusty to give me a couple of days.”

*The deliberation over the post-season roster continues. Nothing has been announced either for the roster or the rotation.

“A lot depends on the health of Nix and a lot depends on the health of Edmonds too,” manager Dusty Baker said of the roster makeup. “It’s never an easy decision. You want to kepe everybody and pitch everybody but you have to make a decision. Someone is invariably going to be left out or left off.”

*For players not making the roster, some will travel with the club. Others could be sent to the team complex in Arizona to workout. If someone is injured during the NLDS, the Reds could add a player of the same position. They can also add and subtract from the 25 man roster before the NLCS.

*With Jim Edmonds, it’s unclear if he will get into a game this weekend to test his tender right Achilles tendon. He received a cortisone shot on Wednesday.

“It depends. You don’t want to get him in a game and go backwards when he is just coming forward a little bit,” Baker said. “We don’t know how far forward. We’ll have to make a decision if it would be better to wait an extra week for the next round. No matter what he’ll be traveling with us and hitting, if he can hit. You would like his expertise there because he’s been down this road many, many times. He’s already helped Jay Bruce and Drew Stubbs in the outfield, with certain pitches and scenarios and stuff. It helps to have somebody around that’s been through this a couple of times.”

 

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The day after yesterday

This is definitely a lineup not previously shown by the Reds this season. A lot of guys are getting breaks after a big night on Tuesday. One key guy to watch will be Laynce Nix. This is his first start since spraining his left ankle in August. Nix hobbled down the line on a double play ball last week in Milwaukee. This could be a good test.

Weds lineup vs HOU

Bloomquist 9
Valaika 4
Alonso 3
Francisco 5
Heisey 8
Nix 7
Janish 6
Miller 2
Cueto 1

Some quick notes –

*No playoff rotation has been decided, Dusty Baker said.

*The regular players were told to be ready to play if needed tonight. Much of the regular lineup should be back on Thursday.

*And this isn’t a surprise but it’s official, Mike Leake is done for the season.

“We decided today that we’re going to shut him down,” Baker said. “He’s going to travel with the team. There’s not enough time to get him ready. He hasn’t been on the mound. Some of the guys that have been on the mound are sharper and ready than he is right now. He was a bit disappointed but was happy when he found out he was going to travel with us. Like I told him last night without him, we wouldn’t be here now. He was a big part of this thing.”

*Leake was 8-4 with a 4.23 ERA in 24 games. Take away two rough relief outings, he had a 3.78 ERA in his 22 starts. He reached 135 2/3 innings in his first professional season.

*For the next couple of games, I will be working on playoff preview stuff. My colleague Kevin Goheen will be covering the rest of this series on the big web site. I will still blog when I can.

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Votto out again, Alonso in

Weds lineup vs MIL

Phillips 4
Cabrera 6
Bruce 9
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Alonso 3
Stubbs
Hernandez 2
Cueto 1

*Jim Edmonds was hobbling around the clubhouse with a protective boot on his right foot — but the news on his Achilles wasn’t awful. There is not a tear, according to tests.

“He’s not as severe as originally thought,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “So I think he’ll be in a boot for a couple of days and let it calm down.”

*Joey Votto got another day off after missing Tuesday’s game with a sinus infection.

“He’s doing a little better,” Baker said. “We thought it was best to wait until Friday, especially since we have a day off tomorrow. He was going to be off today but he was feeling so bad yesterday, he didn’t play yesterday.”

*Laynce Nix, who hasn’t played since Aug. 23 because of a sprained left ankle, appears to be available tonight. Nix has been taking BP for a week and has been running without problems.

“Hopefully I can get an at-bat tonight or the next couple of days,” Nix said.

Nix wasn’t worried about the one month layoff affecting him being ready for the postseason.

“I’m not concerned so much about playing as I am feeling comfortable running around,” Nix said. “I’ve played all year and have been healthy all year. I have enough at-bats where it would only take a couple of at-bats to get back into it and feeling comfortable.”

*This is Yonder Alonso’s first career start in the big leagues.

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The Bloomquist era begins

Weds lineup vs. ARI

Phillips 4
Cabrera 6
Votto 3
Gomes 7
Cairo 5
Stubbs 8
Bloomquist 9
Hanigan 2
Bailey 1

*3B Scott Rolen is not in the lineup because of stiffness in his upper back and neck.

“It happened on a swing during my third at-bat, my first strikeout last night,” Rolen said. “It was a slider down and I caught something.”

Rolen is listed as day-to-day for a return, which will likely happen in Houston.

“I’m not worried about it,” Rolen said.

“I could tell last night when he took a couple of funky swings,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “I could tell something was wrong when one hand came off the bat. Plus when he gets real, real quiet, I’ve come to learn something is not right.”

*After Miguel Cairo starts tonight at third base, Baker plans to start Juan Francisco there on Thursday.

*Chris Heisey is available to play but is still bothered by a sore left biceps. Baker is trying to rest him as much as possible.

*Laynce Nix (sprained left ankle) is jogging but not running yet. He has been hitting in the cage.

*Orlando Cabrera is 9-for-18 lifetime vs. Arizona LHP Joe Saunders. On the other hand, Willie Bloomquist is 0-for-11. 

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New lineup, Bruce is back

Ignore the lineup in the previous post. There was a change. Chris Heisey is out and Jay Bruce is in for the first time since Aug. 30. He’s been out with a sore right side.

“I’m ready to go,” Bruce said. “It’s time to go. I want to get ready for that push and help my team as much as I can.”

Reds manager Dusty Baker said that Bruce didn’t talk his way into the lineup.

“He’s been saying that for a couple of days,” said Baker, who noted that Bruce likely won’t be 100 percent the rest of the season but good enough that he can play.

“Heisey is hurting some now. We’ll try to play Jay the next couple of days,” Baker said. “Heisey might be ready Wednesday when we have a lefty. We’ll see what’s going on.”

Monday lineup vs. ARI

Phillips 4
Cabrera 6
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Bruce 9
Stubbs 8
Hanigan 2
Arroyo 1

*Laynce Nix (left ankle) and Jim Edmonds (right oblique tear) took batting practice today. Edmonds could be ahead of Nix in returning because Nix isn’t able to run yet.

 

Leadoff batter switcheroo

Weds lineup vs. COL

Stubbs 8
Phillips 4
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Gomes 7
Heisey 9
Hanigan 2
Janish 6
Arroyo 1

*This is the 100th different lineup Dusty Baker has written out this season. There was a reason he put Drew Stubbs ahead of Brandon Phillips.

“Stubbs is swinging a little better than Brandon right now,” Baker said. “Hopefully Brandon in front of Joey will get some quality pitches to hit too. I’m going with the hot hand to try and ignite our engine. You got to have a key to every engine. These guys the last couple days – with Fowler and Young – you what speed at the top can do for you.”

*In the latest Jay Bruce update, he said he was feeling good. He was slated to take batting practice today with the team.

*Orlando Cabrera is out tonight because of some soreness. He is getting treatment.

*No decision has been made yet on who will start Saturday’s game vs. Pittsburgh.

*It doesn’t sound like Laynce Nix (sprained left ankle) will be ready to come off the disabled list when he’s eligible on Friday. Nix did not travel with the club.

“I heard today he’s not much better, they said,” Baker said. “It was disheartening because he’s a big part of our club – off the bench and spot playing against certain pitchers and defensively late in the game. He’s an important part of this team.”

*The Reds announced today that fans should be in their seats at GABP by 6:30pm on Saturday to watch honors for Pete Rose and the 25th anniversary of his record-breaking 4192nd hit. Gates open at 5:20 p.m. ET

*Well before batting practice started, Rockies coaches and former players Vinny Castilla and Glenallen Hill were raking in the cage with some home run balls. I asked Baker if he and Brook Jacoby ever get tempted to step into the cage.

“Hank [Aaron] told me not to do that when I first took this job,” Baker said. “He said sometimes you could deflate your players, if you haven’t played in a while, and all of sudden you’re hitting equal or better than they’re hitting. I remember one day we talked Frank Robinson into it. He got in the cage. He was hitting some missiles. Nobody wanted to go in after him.”

      
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Postgame: Whew.

This late in the season, what almost happened Wednesday could have qualified as the most painful loss the Reds have endured in 2010 — and they’ve had a few like that already. But instead that 12-11 win in 12 innings might turn out to be their most hard-fought, and their most satisfying of the season.

Yes, the Reds gave up a 10-1 lead and were knocked around with a six-run eighth to fall behind by a run. But they also came back right away to tie it with Paul Janish’s clutch RBI single in the top of the ninth. And in the end, only the win matters.

Joey Votto, already with two homers in the game, had another MVP moment with his RBI single in the top of the 12th against Barry Zito that scored Miguel Cairo.

“We’ve had several games this year where teams have come back and taken the lead from us and we didn’t come back and overcome that little swing,” Votto said. “For us to do it here in San Francisco against such a competitive team means a lot. This deep in the season, I think it means more.”

Other items of note —

*The Reds completed a 6-3 West Coast trip. Even if it didn’t feel like it at the end, that’s big.

*Francisco Cordero had to bat for himself for only the third time in his career. The Reds had one bench player left in Ramon Hernandez but Cordero was also the club’s only viable reliever left.

*Edinson Volquez was warming up in the bullpen behind Cordero but Reds manager Dusty Baker tried to avoid using him if at all possible.

*Brandon Phillips was hit on the right hand by a 95 mph fastball in the fifth and came out in the sixth. Phillips had X-rays and was initially diagnosed with a right hand contusion. More X-rays will be needed because he was still swollen.

*Laynce Nix could barely run on his sprained left ankle as a pinch-hitter in the top of the eighth. That could be a future roster move.

*Jonny Gomes collected career homer No. 100 and his first since July 19 in the top of the first.

*Votto was 4-for-7 with four RBIs. He became the first Reds’ first baseman to have at least 30 homers in a season since Lee May in 1971.

*The Reds were outscored 38-19 during the series.

More quotes

“It was difficult to have had such a comfortable lead the entire game and then late in the game, that can be pretty difficult to overcome. Momentum does play a role in games. We played really well at the beginning and they all of a sudden carried that momentum late in the game and got ahead. I’ll tell you what, we showed that type of resilience and the ability to come back. Paul Janish comes up with a big hit. Cordero threw great. For us to have played as well as we did and come back and win this game and finish off a good road trip, really means a lot to all of us I think.” — Joey Votto

“It’s a long plane ride today. We’re going to go home happy, 6-3. It’s all that matters. This is all behind us now.” — Francisco Cordero

“It was tough. It was ugly, beautiful or whatever. It was a win. You have to see it the positive way. We were 6-3 on the road trip. That was a good road trip.” — Miguel Cairo

“That’s what MVP’s do. That’s what All-Stars do. They come through when you need them.” — Dusty Baker on Votto.

One more note –

I’m starting a vacation so I won’t be on any games again until the next big one — the series at St. Louis starting on Sept. 3. See you then. Feel free to exchange comments (keep it civil, please) while I’m away.

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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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A Cain Mutiny?

As well as the Reds West Coast trip is going — already 5-1 — it could move into extraordinary mode with a good showing against the Wild Card contending Giants. The toughest pitcher they could face is in the opener, Matt Cain.

*This was Cain’s line vs. the Reds at GABP on June 8 during a 3-0 loss: 9 ip, 7 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K.

*Cain is 3-3 with a 3.21 ERA in seven career starts vs. CIN.

*The Reds best hitter against Cain is Laynce Nix, who is 5-for-11 (.455) with one homer.

*Lurking ahead on Tuesday for the Giants is lefty Jonathan Sanchez, who is 2-1 with a 2.41 ERA against CIN in three starts. Sanchez was a 6-3 loser on June 9 at GABP after he gave up three runs and seven hits over five innings.

*From Better off Red czar and resident club mathlete Jamie Ramsey, the Reds are 97-65 over their last 162 games.

*With some of the Triple Crown talk about Joey Votto lately, the Reds answered a question I admit to not knowing. I knew Boston’s Carl Yastrzemski was the last Triple Crown winner in 1967. What I did not know is that no NL player has won it since the Cardinals’ Joe Medwick in 1937.

*For those who are interested, here is the link to see video of Votto’s 10-pitch AB against Jonathan Broxton from Sunday: http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=11274655

Monday lineup vs. SF

Phillips 4
Nix 7
Votto 3
Rolen 5
Edmonds 8
Bruce 9
Hernandez 2
Janish 6
Volquez 1

 

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