Results tagged ‘ Paul Janish ’

Saturday in KC

I”ve been amazed by the large numbers of Reds fans I’ve seen in Kansas City the last couple of days. I’ve seen them here at the ballpark, at a local watering hole, walking around the Plaza district, at lunch today and at the Negro League Museum. If you’re ever in K.C., I highly recommend you checking out the museum — it’s fantastic. You’ll learn a lot about some great players and the $8 admission is reasonable.

Dusty Baker took several Reds players to the Negro League Museum today, including Jay Bruce, Ryan Hanigan, Chris Dickerson, Willy Taveras, Paul Janish and Carlos Fisher.

“It was good. The guys learned a lot like going to a library,” Baker said. “It’s the second time I’ve been there. Everywhere you go, you see something different. It’s something special. The guys liked it.”

It’s been four years since I had last been to K.C. so I couldn’t wait today to pay a lunch visit at my favorite local BBQ place — Fiorella’s Jackstack. Dare I say, Jackstack’s BBQ sauce is as good as Montgomery Inn’s (gasp!) and I will be bringing some home with me. Like M.I., Jackstack’s original sauce has a sweet flavor.

Reds lineup:

Taveras 8
Gonzalez 6
Phillips 4
Nix 7
Gomes DH
Bruce 9
Hernandez 3
Rosales 5
Hanigan 2
Arroyo 1

The people are the same — the order is slightly different than last night’s debacle. Gomes moved up from 7th to 5th and Rosales and Hanigan flip-flopped. Obviously, the person leadoff spot is the one that likely has you (choose one of the following:) unhappy, perplexed or irate. Put me down as perplexed.   

Here is the breakdown of offensive woe lately:

Jay Bruce……. 5-for-47
Chris Dickerson.. .296 in last 25g
Jonny Gomes…….. .462 in last 5g
Alex Gonzalez……….. .304 in last 6g
Jerry Hairston Jr….. 3-game hit streak
Ryan Hanigan…………… .286 in last 6g
Ramon Hernandez… 0-for-18, 2-for-29
Paul Janish………….. 3-for-19
Laynce Nix……………..3-for-22
Brandon Phillips…….. .318 since April
Adam Rosales………….  3-for-32
Willy Taveras……. 0-for-28, 1-for-33

Team…………… .175 in last 8g (49-280)

More on Taveras:

Baker was asked about Taveras, who besides not hitting well — isn’t running well. He’s been battling with a sore right hamstring, and was unable to beat out a bunt during the first inning on Friday.

“Speed men if they hurt something, you will be a little apprehensive,” Baker said. “He’s running better. He’s running smoother and getting out of the blocks a lot quicker.”

Taveras came into Saturday batting just .234 with a .288 on-base percentage. Baker doesn’t believe Taveras’ hamstring has an effect on his poor hitting.

“No, he wasn’t hitting before that,” Baker said. “We have to find a way to get him on base. He makes us go. Not to put it all on Willy, when our offense is clicking, Willy is getting on base a lot. He needs to get on base pretty soon or he’s about to go crazy. He holds a lot inside. He wants to do so well.”

As for why Hanigan was moved to ninth behind Adam Rosales, Baker wanted to take advantage of Hanigan’s ability to hit and run and go the opposite way and Rosales moves a little better ahead of Hanigan.

There is an off day on Monday but the Reds will stay on rotation and not skip anybody. Part of the reason is Bronson Arroyo hasn’t fared well the past couple of years vs. the Braves, who are in Cincinnati next week. Arroyo had one of his worst outings vs. Atlanta on April 25 — 9 ER, 9 H, over 5 2/3 innings.

I took a walk around the lower concourse of the remodel Kauffman Stadium before going back to the press box from the clubhouse. Out beyond the fountains in the outfield was the usual kids fare, like a mini baseball field, batting and pitching cages and a playground. One thing found that I’ve never seen before at a big league ballpark — a miniature golf course. 

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Nix in the lineup

For those looking for a Laynce Nix start in left field, today’s lineup vs. the Brewers should placate you — at least for now.

Did anyone see the Manny Ramirez news coming? Despite today’s times, that’s still a stunner.

Reds lineup:

Taveras CF
Hairston SS
Votto 1B Bruce RF
Phillips 2B
Bruce RF Nix LF
Hernandez C 1B
Nix LF Hanigan C
Rosales 3B
Owings P

4:45 pm update: Joey Votto was scratched from the lineup because he is sick.

News you can use:

Dusty Baker had a meeting with Chris Dickerson about the move to put Nix in the lineup tonight.

“I called Dickerson in and talked to him,” Baker said. “I said ‘hey man, you’ve got to go back to work and get it back together.’ Nix is going good right now. We have to win ballgames. I’m not saying it’s all his fault but Nix is doing his thing.”

Dickerson is batting .217 and is tied for the team lead with 21 strikeouts. Nix came in batting .353 and has one homer and six doubles during his limited chances.

SS Alex Gonzalez (left oblique strain) was scheduled to play catch today and said he would take some light swings with his bat on Friday. Gonzalez hoped he could return to the lineup as soon as Saturday.

“I will feel ready soon, maybe Saturday or Sunday,” Gonzalez said. “I do not want to go to the DL. Every day, I feel a lot better. Today, I feel a lot better than yesterday. I can move it a lot easier.”

Ramon Hernandez played the ninth inning at first base last night and is starting there in Votto’s place. Hernandez will be using Adam Rosales’ first base glove.

“I’ve got one but it’s not broken in,” Hernandez said.

One night after throwing 35 pitches of emergency relief in the ninth inning, SS Paul Janish felt the effects.

“Janish came out of it OK. He’s a little sore today,” Baker said. “I was worried about that after the number of pitches he threw. I remember that’s how Jose Canseco got hurt. He was throwing sliders. Paulie was throwing fastballs and changeups.”

Said Janish: “I’m a lot of sore today.”

Some info from the Reds game notes:

Reds Vice President and Assistant General Manager Bob Miller will participate in an online chat at reds.com/chat tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. ET…fans can log on to that site and post their questions beginning at 8:00 a.m. tomorrow.

Players of the Month
The organization’s Minor League Players of the Month for April were Louisville’s IF Adam Rosales (17g, .431, 7 2b, 4hr, 15rbi, 2sb) and LHP Matt Maloney (3gs, 2-0, 1.86, 19.1ip, 18h, 0bb, 15k).

Lunch with Micah
As part of the Share the Celebration program, 8 young fans will have lunch with Reds pitcher Micah Owings tomorrow from 11:00 a.m. to noon at the Kenwood Cheesecake Factory…4 of the kids attending the lunch will be Reds Head Kids Club members, while another child will be hosted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

500
Tonight’s game is the 500th at Great American Ball Park…the Reds are 245-253-1 here since the ballpark opened in 2003, including 26-26 vs the Brewers.

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Blowout loss, Janish pitches

There isn’t much to say about a 15-3 Reds loss to the Brewers. All that was interesting in the end is that shortstop Paul Janish pitched the ninth inning. He was the first position player to pitch since Lenny Harris did it on June 1, 1998.

The game pretty much began and ended with the ineffectiveness of starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo. In an outing that was reminiscent to June 24, 2008 shelling at Toronto, Arroyo lasted one inning, plus four batters. In that time, he gave up seven hits, three walks and two home runs while throwing only 46 pitches.

That sent Arroyo’s ERA from 4.91 over two runs to 7.15.

And with that came the end of the Reds’ brief run as the pitching staff with the lowest ERA in the Majors. It’s now at 3.99 after it was 3.61 entering the day.

Reds have more road wins than anyone at 10-5. They are 4-8 at GABP.

“It’s like walking into a casino,” said Arroyo when asked to explain it. “You win one night. It’s a horseshoe. It doesn’t mean you’ll win the next night. It’s just the way it is in baseball.”

Dusty Baker quotes:

“With our situation, we were hoping that [Arroyo] would get it in the second inning because we needed some innings. We played 14 innings and used our whole bullpen two days ago.”

On using Janish — four relievers already used and Masset and Rhodes were not available. He wanted to save Burton.

“It boiled down to the process of elimination,” Baker said.

Janish gave up five runs and five hits after striking out first batter J.J. Hardy. He threw 35 pitches , mostly fastballs. His velocity was in the 88-92 mph range. At Rice Univeristy, he was a shortstop and a reliever.

“I think I had a little left in the tank but I didn’t want to risk running up into anyone’s gut,” Janish said. “I tried to run it across the plate. Unfortunately, that’s what they were looking for.”

 

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Historically good pitching

Sorry for not hanging a “gone fishing” sign up while I was out for a couple of days. I skipped the Florida series but had to catch a flight home from Pittsburgh Sunday right after the game.

Here is a note from the Elias Sports Bureau about some splendid Reds pitching:

For only the third time in the live-ball era, the Reds have posted four team shutouts over a six-game span…the starting pitchers in those shutouts were Edinson Volquez, Bronson Arroyo, Johnny Cueto and Volquez again…starters in the previous 2 instances were Elmer Riddle, Johnny Vander Meer, Joe Beggs and Vander Meer in 1943, followed in 1970 by Gary Nolan, Jim McGlothlin, Jim Merritt and Nolan.

Reds lineup:

Taveras CF
Hairston 3B
Votto 1B
Phillips 2B
Bruce RF
McDonald LF
Hanigan C
Janish SS
Arroyo P

News you can use:

SS Alex Gonzalez (strained left oblique) was re-examined on Wednesday. The Reds are holding off putting Gonzalez on the DL for now.

“He’s better today than he was yesterday,” manager Dusty Baker said. “At this point, if he keeps improving over the next couple of days, we might not have to DL him. I know [going on the DL] is not what he would like after being on the DL a year and a half. But we’ll get to a point when we’ll have to make a decision on his progress.”

If Gonzalez does go on the DL in a few days, it can be made retroactive to Tuesday if he doesn’t appear in a game. Paul Janish and Jerry Hairston Jr. will fill in. Part of the issue if Gonzalez does go on the DL is there aren’t many infielders lighting it up at Triple-A Louisville. Chris Valaika is batting .176, Danny Richar is hitting .213. Neither are on the 40-man roster. Drew Sutton made his Louisville debut yesterday after being out with mono and went 1-for-4.

3B Edwin Encarnacion (small chip fracture, left wrist) had his cast removed today. He was placed in a removeable splint that he’ll likely wear for at least one week.

More on the pitching: The Reds’ 3.61 team ERA is best in the National League. The last time this team finished a season leading in ERA was 1940.

The Reds reached six shutouts last night in their 26th game, their fastest to six shutouts since the 1914 Reds threw their sixth shutout in their 25th game. They had six shutouts during all of the 2008 season.

“I am just trying to stay the heck away,” pitching coach Dick Pole said. “They’re having fun right now and it’s not up to me to cramp their style. Let them keep enjoying what’s going on.”

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Loving it on the road

The Reds enter Saturday night 8-3 on the road this season, which is their best road start since 2002 when they also were 8-3. If they win tonight or tomorrow, that will be four-straight winning road series. The club hasn’t done that since August, 2005.

The back-to-back shutouts Wednesday and Friday were the first since the Reds blanked the Dodgers twice on Aug. 7-8, 2007. There haven’t been three-straight shutouts since June 21-23, 1963.

As expected, Chris Dickerson is back in the lineup for the first time since Monday (concussion-like symptoms).

Reds lineup:

Taveras CF
Dickerson LF
Votto 1B
Phillips 2B
Bruce RF
Hernandez C
Rosales 3B
Gonzalez SS
Owings P

Dusty Baker was asked if he was tempted to keep Ryan Hanigan behind the plate since he hits whenever he plays. In his five games when starting (all with Arroyo pitching), Hanigan is batting .412 (7-for-17). Ramon Hernandez is batting .246 but has come on lately.

“What are you going to do with Ramon who is just getting his stroke together?”Baker said. “If you have a good team, I don’t think this team is used to having so many good players at as many positions. Ramon is my catcher but when Hanny plays, he does his thing and we win. That way will keep him sharp and keep Ramon strong through the rest of the season.”

In the eighth inning Friday after walking, Adam Rosales was picked off by lefty reliever John Grabow and immediately after reaching the dugout was spotted speaking with top base stealer Willy Taveras. It was Rosales who sought out Taveras for the help.

“There’s a lot to learn and a lot of new information,” Rosales said. “Stealing with lefties, I have to get better. I just went first move on that guy. Some lefties you can pick up easily but I haven’t been up here long enough and we had a steal sign. I asked Willy if it was the smart thing to do if we have a steal sign. He said it was all you can do, really.”

Dickerson, Paul Janish and Darnell McDonald were among those that got extra swings in early BP today. Janish hasn’t played since Sunday vs. the Braves.

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Frigid in Milwaukee

The thermostat is still turned way down in Milwaukee and we’re all thankful again for the Miller Park roof.

The aforementioned frigid output of Ramon Hernandez (2-for-19) and Alex Gonzalez (0-for-16) has prompted a lineup change. Ryan Hanigan is catching and Paul Janish is the shortstop. Here is the full Reds lineup:

Taveras, cf

Hairson, lf

Votto, 1b

Phillips, 2b

Bruce, rf

Encarnacion, 3b

Hanigan, c

Janish, ss

Arroyo, rhp

 

News you can use:

 

Gonzalez and Hernandez took extra BP this afternoon to work on their swings. Gonzalez found his session to be productive.

 

“Everybody wants to get a hit,” Gonzalez said. “When you’re in that situation, you try to get the first hit. I will keep working. I worked today and tried to fix what I saw in the video. I’m opening up too quick and that’s why I miss a lot of pitches. I will be ready for tomorrow. I will go out there and try to do what I did in BP.”

 

Dusty Baker said that starting pitcher Micah Owings would bat ninth on Wednesday, but unlike some comments Baker made last week, he seems open to batting Owings higher in the order down the road.

“Maybe,” Baker said. “He’s a pretty good ace in the hole in that ninth spot, too.”

Edinson Volquez will be working with pitching coach Dick Pole between starts to tighten his delivery and improve his command

 

“He couldn’t get to his secondary pitches because he couldn’t control his primary pitch – his fastball,” Baker said. “He didn’t throw hardly any changeups. He threw a few breaking balls. It’s hard to throw your changeup if you’re not locating your fastball.”

  

In Minor League news from Jamie Ramsey, Adam Rosales hit another homer (a 435-foot two-run shot) for Triple-A Louisville Monday to extend his hitting streak to five games. Rosales has opened the season batting .412 (7-for-17) with two homers and seven RBIs.

 

Double-A Carolina’s Todd Frazier had three hits last night at Mississippi and raised average to a team-best .455 (10-for-22, 5rbi).

 

Carolina OF Chris Heisey is hitting .412 (7-for-17, 2hr, 4rbi, 2 2B, 6r, 6bb, .583obp)

Late update — Homer Bailey was ejected from tonight’s game vs. Toledo in the top of the third inning when he hit a batter immediately after allowing a home run. Bailey’s line was: 2.2ip, 3h, 3r-2er, 3bb-3k, 2hr. He threw 53 pitches, 30 strikes.

Votto on fire, Reds off the schnide

You didn’t really think the Reds would go 0-162, did you? No one did of course, but Thursday’s 8-6 win a stress buster that was needed. I wrote about the need for a fast start yesterday by the Reds and a 0-3 record after the first series wouldn’t have been what they needed.

  • Joey Votto, who had another big game with a 3-for-5 day and three-run homer. Votto was 7-for-13 (.538) in the series and seems poised to have a big year. He had a great spring despite being known as a slow starter.
  • Bronson Arroyo got off to a slow start but his outing was still solid despite five runs allowed over six innings. I give Arroyo a pass because I’d imagine it’d be tough to pitch after getting a cortisone shot only a few days ago.
  • Paul Janish struck out three times but his rolling single up the middle scored two huge insurance runs in the fifth was big. He was strong defensively too and he will important on these days when Alex Gonzalez’s gets precautionary rests.

Some post-game quotes:

Dusty Baker:

“The main thing is we won. That first one is always the toughest to get it seems like. Hopefully we can start rolling from here.”

“It’s real important for your confidence, your mindset and your attitude. I don’t care who you are, as long as I’ve been in this game, every year you start thinking about the Chicago Cubs starting off 0-13. Every time you lose one, the pressure mounts until you get your first one.”

Votto:

“My mindset personally is more team oriented. Last year, I was concentrating on a lot of personal things trying to get myself established as a Major leaguer. This is totally different. I have a mindset of being a better Cincinnati red and a better team. We have to do better this year.”

“It’s such a huge challenge to make the team and stay worth the Major League team throughout the year. I did it successfully I thought. This year I want to play well because I know I’m an important part of the team. I want to help create wins.”

“Last night it was so frustrating because I had such a good game and it didn’t produce anything. It really reminds you of how humbling this game is. There are going to be times where we all don’t get any hits and somehow come out with a win.”

  • And for those who panicked about Francisco Cordero stinking it up in Spring Training, this should serve as a reminder about the meaning of spring performances. Cordero was nasty as he struck out the side for his first save.

“That’s the best I’ve seen him throw and that’s the best his ankle felt,” Baker said. “He was operating all of last year on a bad ankle. In Spring Training, everybody was worried about him because he wasn’t throwing well or hard. He’s getting stronger and better.”

It’s only three games in, but what are your thoughts about the Reds so far?

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Janish, Herrera make it, Arroyo gets cortisone shot

Before the Reds workout at Great American Ball Park got going, some players that came north learned they weren’t going to be around for Monday’s opener.

Here’s what I know so far:

IF Adam Rosales and LHP Bill Bray were optioned to Triple-A Louisville. Jonny Gomes was reassigned to the Minor League camp. That last move totally shocked me. I thought Gomes was as good as in when I left camp a couple of weeks ago and will try to learn more about the thought process behind it.

That also means shortstop Paul Janish and lefty Daniel Herrera made the team.

“I’m excited and fired up to be here,” Janish said. “Being on the Opening Day roster, for whatever reason, has such implications to it, so it’s a good thing. It’s huge because it makes me feel like they have a lot of confidence in me too to start the year here.”

There are still some extra players in the clubhouse so I’m not sure on the final 25-man roster just yet.

Outfielders Laynce Nix and Darnell McDonald were both given new numbers (16 and 17, respectively) and were unpacking lockers. Looks like they’re in. 

RHP Homer Bailey is still here, as is RHP Nick Masset. That decision could come down to the health status of Bronson Arroyo, who has been dealing with carpal tunnel in his right wrist. Arroyo, who is scheduled to start on Thursday, is going to play catch during the workout. The results of that session could decide Bailey’s fate — Louisville or starting on Thursday for the Reds.

“I don’t know what they’re going to tell me but I’m telling you that I’m going to pitch on Thursday,” Arroyo said. “I think I’ve earned my stripes to look them in the face and say ‘I’m fine, give me the ball.’

“It’s just sore from the cortisone but all of the tingling is gone. I haven’t had this much energy in two years. I’m so pumped just to play catch. It’s the first time my arm feels normal in about three weeks.”

  • The Reds are showing off their new HD scoreboard today and the early reviews are solid. Not only that, they have LED displaying of out-of-town scores on the left field wall now. And those lousy looking flags that showed the standings behind the right field moon deck are gone (they actually blew away during September’s wind storm). In their place and in the same spot are an electronic display of the standings — much better looking.

 

  • FYI — I’m back on the beat again starting today after the extended time off. Team Sheldon did add a new member but he will need extended, extended Spring Training before he will be able to start learning to type and post on my blog.

 

  • I have to offer sincere thanks and gratitude to Jonathan Mayo, who filled in very well while I was out. His effort made it easier for me to get away and for me to catch up as I returned. Thanks as well to my boss, Jim Banks, for giving me the time off.

— Mark Sheldon 

 

 

Sunday in Dunedin

It’s a little patch of Florida with the Labatt’s beer flows and the Canadian maple leaf flag flies proudly — Dunedin. Unfortunately, it’s not one of the finer ballparks in the Grapefruit League and the ball is prone to flying out without much effort on the hitters part. I remember one day when the wind was blowing out and Eric Milton was pitching…you needed an abacus to keep score.

Until the bus gets here, this is the Reds’ lineup:

Hopper CF, Dickerson LF, Votto 1B, Phillips 2B, Bruce RF, Encarnacion 3B, Nix DH, Gonzalez SS, Hanigan C.

Cueto is the starting pitcher and Nick Masset is expected to follow from the bullpen. Bill Bray, who hasn’t pitched since he was up here eight days ago, is also on the travel roster.

Blue Jays lineup:

Inglett SS, Hill 2B, Bautista CF, Millar 1B, Rolen 3B, Lane DH, Snider RF, Barrett C, Adams LF

P Mills

Updated news you can use:

  • Dusty Baker still hasn’t defined specific late-inning bullpen roles but he is leaning towards carrying 12 pitchers early in the season, instead of 11. 

“We have to get Francisco Cordero together and see who our long man is,” Baker said

  • When asked if infielder Jeff Keppinger was in danger of not making the team because of a slow spring, Baker gave little indication that was possible. Keppinger had two hits on Saturday but came into Sunday batting .179 (5-for-28).

“He has a track record. That helps big time,” Baker said. “Kepp is a guy that plays a lot of positions. Things are always subject to change but you never really feel comfortable in this game. You have to continue to produce. I wasn’t worried about Kepp hitting. He can hit. He didn’t have his stroke. Everybody doesn’t get their stroke at the same time. You hate to make up your mind on spring Trainings only. You can get fooled. You have to go on track record, if he has one, and what he’s doing now. If he’s not hurt, there’s a good chance he’ll come pretty close to what he’s always done.

  • If Baker wanted to go in a different direction, Adam Rosales or Paul Janish would be two top alternatives. Both can play multiple infield positions. Rosales is batting .222 but Janish came in batting .300 and has made improvements offensively. He batted .188 in 38 big league games in 2008.

“I think I mentally took on the approach to slow it down,” Janish said.

Baker believed there to be more to it than that. Janish has put in the work the club asked of him.

“I’ve noticed that he looks stronger,” Baker said. “Every time I go in the weight room to work out, he’s in there. He’s working on his hands and his forearm strength.”.

Game on.

Today is the first day of the rest of the season…really. Grapefruit League action starts today and if we’re thinking alike — it’s a very welcomed date on the calendar.

For now, here is the Rays’ lineup. (See earlier post for the Reds)

Bartlett SS, Crawford LF, Longoria 3B, Burrell DH, Aybar 1B, Navarro C, Zobrist 2B, Gross RF, Perez CF   P Hernandez.

In transactions — LHP Bill Bray, SS Paul Janish and C/IF Wilkin Castillo agreed to one-year contracts. The Reds have eight players unsigned.

In other notes from the clubhouse:

Castillo and LHP Pedro Viola were not selected by the Dominican Republic for the World Baseball Classic but no reason was given. Manager Dusty Baker did not rule out carrying three catchers so Castillo could benefit from the D.R.’s decision.

“For Castillo, it’s a chance to show more what he can do,” Baker said. “His chances were increased by not going without being selected.

“If you’re going to have a third catcher, you’d like him to be more versatile. He could play a lot of places.”

“I’m trying to make the team and I’m working hard,” Castillo said. “I am ready to play everywhere — wherever the manager needs me.”

The Reds’ lineup appeared to be similar to what you will see on April 6 for Opening Day.

“Pretty close,” Baker said. “It depends on who we’re facing. On Opening Day, we’ll see [Mets lefty ace Johan] Santana so it might be a little different.”

The lineup will be together for the next four days since Joey Votto, Willy Taveras, Jerry Hairston and Ramon Hernandez are leaving March 1 for the WBC. Baker used a DH in Jacque Jones and doesn’t plan on having pitchers hit until at least March 10. 

This is the first time big league baseball has been played in Port Charlotte since 2002 when the Rangers were in the facility. They moved to Surprise, Ariz., the following year. Since then, a $27 million renovation was done here and the ballpark looks like a very nice place for fans to watch baseball.

 

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