Results tagged ‘ Scott Rolen ’

Arroyo close to kicking mono

Having mononucleosis probably isn’t the cats’ pajamas for Bronson Arroyo, but he’s not outwardly appearing all that hindered on the mound.

Despite a couple of jams, Arroyo pitched six very good innings in Saturday’s 6-1 Reds win. He allowed eight hits and no walks and had six strikeouts. He had five of those K’s over the first two innings.

In two starts, Arroyo is 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA, no walks and 11 strikeouts. Tonight, he was done after six innings and 94 pitches. Without mono, he likely would have gone seven innings. The mono-free days might soon be approaching.

“I will probably be close after the next two starts,” Arroyo said. “I’m able to workout very close to 100 percent now between starts. I’m just not quite as strong as I should be. I can’t throw the ball as hard as I feel like I can. I can really feel it taking batting practice. That’s kind of the measure for me on the strength I have when I’m hitting the ball. I’m not far off but I think it will take a little more time.”

Other notes:

*Joey Votto’s seven-game hitting streak ended as he went 0-for-1 with three walks and two runs scored.

*Scott Rolen has a seven-game hitting streak and nine RBIs overall for the season. He hit his RBI single tonight in the top of the first.

*Paul Janish has a six-game hitting streak and went 2-for-4 after a scoring change. In the ninth, his hit to the shortstop was originally scored an E6.

Quotes:

“Obviously there wasn’t much going on for offensively later. That’s not a discredit to us. That’s a credit to him. He threw the ball well. We’ve faced him three times. He’s thrown the ball well every time. The ball just explodes well out of his hand. He controls the game with his fastball and has a couple of good secondary pitches.” — Scott Rolen on D-Backs starter Daniel Hudson

“He pitched great. He pitched masterfully. There weren’t that many balls hit hard and we got some runs early.” — Dusty Baker on Arroyo

No more undefeated for Reds

 So that whole 162-0 thing is out of the question now I guess?

The Reds weren’t going to do that, obviously. But they felt like they had chances to go 6-0 during a3-2 loss to the Astros. The record is 5-1 instead.

The glaring issue this time was key hits — there weren’t many. The Reds were 0-for-5 RISP with 11 LOB.

Notes:

*When Nick Masset gave up the go-ahead run in the ninth, it snapped a 12-inning scoreless streak for the Reds bullpen.

*Scott Rolen did come up big as a pinch-hitter in the seventh with a solo home run off Brett Myers that tied the game at 2-2. Rolen was 3-for-7 last season as a pinch-hitter…with two homers. It was also Rolen’s fourth career pinch-hit homer.

*Drew Stubbs went 0-for-5, snapping his hitting streak at 13 — dating back to last season.

*Joey Votto singled in the seventh and has a 6-game hitting streak. He’s batting .391 (9-for-23).

*Brandon Phillips hads four-straight multi-hit games. He’s batting .440 (11-for-25).

*The Reds still have only one error for the season (on Opening Day). The only other team with one error in six games is the Braves.

*I did a notebook today on Paul Janish’s hot start. There will also be items on the team defense and when it’s posted, something on LeCure’s day.

Quotes:

“They put some good swings on some balls and you can’t do anything about it. I pretty much threw a lot of the pitches where I wanted to today. They found holes and found gaps. That’s kind of the way it goes. I’m not going to get down on myself. I’ve got a lot more appearances to go. We’re still out there fighting, giving it our all.” — Nick Masset

“I was fairly pleased. There were a couple of times I got a little bit complacent out there and I think that cost us. the first pitch to Lee that he hit into the gap was a get-me over fastball. I didn’t have a whole lot behind it. he took advantage and did what good hitters do. A couple of walks was me being kind of lazy.” — Sam LeCure on his outing

“We had a lot of chances today. We’ve been picking them up the last couple of days. We just didn’t get that two-out hit today that we needed. They ended up getting it.” — Dusty Baker

Until Friday from Phoenix…
Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Seeking a sweep



Reds lineup vs. Brewers

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

*It’s a day game after a night game but Scott Rolen is playing.

“I talked to him and we have two days off in three days,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “We’ll figure it out as days go. He’ll probably be off Thursday.”

*The Reds will be holding a voluntary workout at the ballpark during Monday’s off day.

*Brewers starter Randy Wolf is 10-3 with a 3.13 ERA in 20 career starts vs. the Reds.
Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Stunning win on Opening Day

That Reds penchant for the drama didn’t disappear after an off-season. Ramon Hernandez brought it all back, and then, some with a stunning three-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. It gave the Reds a 7-6 win.

Cincinnati came into the ninth down 6-3 against Brewers closer John Axford. A fun conclusion for the Reds and their 42,398 fans at GABP…but not a well-played game overall.

Highlights:

*The Reds were 1-for-10 RISP with 10 LOB. They were 0-for-9 before Hernandez came through.

*Edinson Volquez was rocked for three homers, including two in a row to start the game. Carlos Gomez hit the second one and it sailed 429 feet into the upper deck of right field. Not a cheapie by any stretch.

*Jonny Gomes made an error fielding Ryan Braun’s two-out single. It put Braun on 2B and a Jordan Smith balk later put runners on second and third. A possibly tough insurance run scored on Casey McGehee single.

*The Reds were resilent, give them credit. They did not pack it in on a freezing cold day.

*Brandon Phillips’ nifty slide step to avoid McGehee’s tag saved a rally. McGehee should have just thrown to first base and that game likely doesn’t end like it did. Scott Rolen hustled hard to beat the throw to first base, as well. Asked to describe his speed, Rolen dryly replied “Electric.”

*Credit the Reds bullpen, especially Sam LeCure and winning pitcher Logan Ondrusek for keeping Milwaukee in check.

*Gomes nearly won the game himself with a long screamer of a fly to center field. It went for a sac fly but put Hernandez in position to win the game.

*Check out this photo gallery from the game.

Notes:

*The last Reds walk-off home run on Opening Day came from the bat of Joe Randa on 4/7/2005 vs. the Mets in a 7-6 win.

*Hernandez is the fifth Reds player to collect four hits on Opening Day.

*The Reds are now 4-9-1 in their last 14 openers. The tie, incidentally came vs. MIL in 2000, after an official game was called because of rain.

*The last time a team hit two home runs to begin a season was the Reds on April 7, 1969 vs. the Dodgers. Pete Rose and Bobby Tolan each went deep against Don Drysdale at Riverfront Stadium. Crosley Field.

*Cincinnati hadn’t won an Opening Day game since 2007, so it was the first in the tenure of Dusty Baker and Walt Jocketty.

Quotes:

“We don’t want to win it like that. We got lucky enough we got the win today. To me, it’s amazing. This is one of the best opening days I’ve ever had in my career. I’m so happy that I helped my team and my team won a ballgame.” — Ramon Hernandez

“They were getting some hits with runners in scoring position and we weren’t. If you keep putting them out there, sooner or later something good is going to happen. The key is opporutunies. If you don’t have opportunities, you don’t have much of a chance.” — Dusty Baker

“We ended the season on a walk-off last year to clinch the division and start it that way this year. We kind of struggled to put together productive innings today. We got some base runners and weren’t able to capitalize and get them across. I think it’s a huge shot in the arm for us to start the year. It’s always great to win the first one and in that fashion, it’s even more special.” — Drew Stubbs, who hit a homer in the fourth inning.

“I think I was a little bit excited in the first inning. After that, I calmed down and threw my pitches.” — Edinson Volquez

“Obviously, my opinion doesn’t really matter. But if my first inclination was that he was not out of the baseline, I would have made sure I kept going towards him a little bit more than I did instead of also trying to make a throw. In hindsight, I wish I had just come through and made a thtow to first and not even worried about him.” — Brewers 3B Casey McGehee on the non-tag of Phillips in the ninth.

“I got away with one in the at-bat before with Gomes. This time I paid for it.” — John Axford, who gave up the game-ending homer to Hernandez.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Heisey keeps hitting

 The Reds took a 9-6 win over the Diamondbacks and moved to 15-14-1 for spring with two games to go. It was the second-day in a row the opponent was held to single-digit runs scored.

The highlights:

*OF Chris Heisey extended his team lead with a fifth homer this spring in the seventh inning during his only at-bat. Other than Dave Sappelt, Heisey has been the Reds best hitter in camp. Heisey is batting .354 (17-for-48) and also leads the club with 13 RBIs. He came in with a .702 slugging percentage in the previous 22 games.

“Heisey is going to come up big before it’s over with,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “He’s going to play. Everybody plays on my team. We’ll get him in there. There aren’t many people like Heisey that can play all three outfield positions, play them well and hit and run.”

*Brandon Phillips went 2-for-3 with three RBIs. Phillips notched his first homer of the spring and it was no cheapie as it bounced hard off of the center field batters’ eye. It was a two-run shot on the first-pitch he saw from Aaron Heilman. Phillips has an eight-game hitting streak.

*The Reds leadoff hitter today, Drew Stubbs went 2-for-3 with three runs scored. Stubbs led off the first inning with a single to right field and doubled to center field in the second inning. Since going 1-for-5 with 3 Ks on Tuesday, Stubbs is 5-for-8 with four RBIs and is up to a .269 average for spring.

*Scott Rolen returned from a sore elbow that kept him out since Thursday. Rolen was 1-for-3 with a sharply hit RBI double in the second inning. From my untrained eye, he didn’t look to be favoring anything.

*Ramon Hernandez (right elbow) played for the first time since last Sunday and went 0-for-1 with a sac fly.

“They’re fine,” Baker said of Rolen and Rodriguez. “We have to watch Ramon a little closer than Scotty but he threw the ball great to second base. He was throwing balls super before.”

*Jared Burton pitched a perfect sixth inning.

*The next updates on this blog will be coming from Cincinnati. Keep checking back.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Sunday

Sorry for the lack of blog activity on Saturday. Just as I’m trying to get the hang of the new system, there was no working wireless at the ballpark in Scottsdale yesterday. I was fortunate just to be able to send my stories once I got connected at a restaurant later when I had dinner.

This is my last day in Goodyear and I will be heading home tonight. I hope you’ve gotten the information you’ve been seeking all spring and thank you for reading and your support. Tom Singer, one of our national writers, will be on site Monday and Tuesday.

Reds vs. Diamondbacks, 4:05 p.m. ET, WLW/MLB.com audio

Stubbs 8
Renteria 6
Phillips 3
Rolen 5
Bruce 9
Gomes 7
Francisco 3
Hernandez 2
Carroll 1

*Obviously, the biggest items out of this lineup are the return of Scott Rolen and Ramon Hernandez. If both are healthy, that could seem to affect the final outcome of the 25-man roster.

Hopefully, more to come later today…

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Blog adjustments soon

Welcome to what could likely be the  final blog entry – under the current format. Changes are coming to both the look of the blog, and the application for which I do the blogging. I am sure there will be some things to get used to, especially for me learning the new system, so please be patient and keep stopping by.

Friday’s Reds vs.Padres lineup, 4:05 p.m. ET WLW/MLB.com audio

Phillips 4
Renteria 6
Votto 3
Rolen 5 Bruce 9
Gomes 7
Bruce 9 Stubbs 8
Stubbs 8 Mesoraco 2
Hernandez 2 Valaika 5
Volquez 1

*As you can see, the lineup has been tweaked since the original post. Scott Rolen is still smarting from being hit on the left elbow Thursday. Rolen is day-to-day but isn’t expected to play on Saturday.

“He can’t extend,” manager Dusty Baker said.

*Since Juan Francisco is getting a look in RF during a Minor League game, Chris Valaika will play 3B today. Valaika is trying to earn one of the last spots on the roster.

*Ramon Hernandez is still dealing with the sore right elbow but we didn’t hear about any setbacks or anything.

*Bronson Arroyo feels better and is back online after throwing 87 pitches yesterday in a Minor League game. Arroyo also went for a chest X-ray and bloodwork yesterday to see it’s more than the flu that’s bothered him. The doctors wanted to rule out valley fever. Test results aren’t back yet.

“As long as that stuff comes back negative – even if it doesn’t – I will be good to go for the season,” Arroyo said. “If it is positive, we’ll get the right medicines so it’s not out of control.”

*And if one other note involving a former Red, OF Chris Dickerson was traded from the Brewers to the Yankees for RHP Sergio Mitre.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Another crazy day at the yard

It’s been an amazing clip of high-scoring affairs involving the Reds. Thursday’s 15-13 loss featured a combined 34 hits.

In the last seven games, the Reds have been outscored by a 72-71 margin.It’s hard to make heads or tails of what we see out here. Looking at the spring stats coming into the day, 10 of the top 11 in team runs scored were from the Cactus League. (Reds scored 152 runs entering day). In team ERA, nine of the bottom 10 teams were also from the Cactus League (Reds were at 5.49 and ranked 27th).

The air is thin at the higher altitudes and many pitchers often have trouble with dry baseballs and gripping the ball. Mistakes that still can be outs in Florida or in regular season parks become blights on the line score.

I’m certainly not making excuses for the pitchers or taking anything away from the hitters, but I think a little context is needed.

“Another long one but if you hang something here, it’s going to fly,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said postgame. “There are some guys that played well today. We made some mistakes. It’s getting a little stagnant. You know you have some more work to do but guys are ready to go. We’re scoring a lot of runs. When you’re playing someone like the Texas Rangers, you know you’re going to give up some runs and you better score some runs. That’s what happened today.”

Now for some of the day’s highlights….

The good:

*Travis Wood’s line isn’t pretty, but he did pitch pretty good. Wood allowed seven runs (five earned) over 5 1/3 innings with no walks and five strikeouts. A two-error third inning led to Nelson Cruz’s grand slam.

“I felt good,” Wood said. “I just got in trouble that third inning there.  I ended up giving up a grand slam.  That hurts but we were able to  battle back as a team.  … I feel like I’m ready for the season.  I got stretched out pretty good.  My pitches seem to be working pretty good.  So, I’ll pitch every fifth day and get ready the other four.  I’ll go out and give it everything I’ve got.”

“We threw the ball around that one inning. You need some help from your friends,” Baker said. “That one inning he didn’t get much. He got his work in. His pitch count is where we wanted to get it.”

*Wood also hit a RBI double in the fifth inning.

*Dave Sappelt continues to push to take an outfield spot. While going 2-for-3 Sappelt smoked a two-run homer off of the center field batters’ eye. He’s batting .553 (21-for-38) this spring.

*Jonny Gomes has a four-game hitting streak (5-for-13, .385) after he hit a three-run homer to left field. It was his second homer in three games. His average is still only .171.

*Paul Janish was 2-for-3 with three RBIs

*With two outs in the sixth, Chris Heisey’s two-run triple to left field re-tied the score at 10-10.

*Francisco Cordero enjoyed another 1-2-3 inning today for his seventh-straight scoreless outing. Five of his last six have been perfect.

Not-so-good

*Scott Rolen was plunked on his left elbow by a Tommy Hunter fastball in the first inning. He was lifted for PH Juan Francisco when he couldn’t grip his bat. There was no word on his condition.

“He had stitch marks on his elbow,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “I didn’t hear anything so no news is good news.”

*Bullpen candidate Jose Arredondo had another rough day. In the five-run eighth inning, Arredondo allowed five earned runs, four hits with one walk, one wild pitch and one strikeout. His spring ERA is 16.20. Because he’s still trying to find his way back from Tommy John surgery, it’s possible he could begin the year on the DL, which would help the Reds since he’s out of options.

“Arredondo is still inconsistent,” Baker said. “He’ll throw a heck of a breaking ball and hang one. He’ll throw a fastball low and away and then get one out over the plate. It shows me he’s not quite there yet.”

Other news:

*Bronson Arroyo, who has been battling the flu for over two weeks, pitched in a Minor League game on Thursday vs. a Dodgers Class A team.  Arroyo threw 87 pitches over 5 2/3 innings and allowed three earned runs and six hits with one walk and six strikeouts.

*Pitching against the Indians’ Class A team, Dontrelle Willis pitched one scoreless inning with one walk and two strikeouts.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Lots of crooked numbers

If you’re one of those folks that love crisp pitching, quick innings and a low-scoring affair…be glad you were not at grand HoHoKam Park on Friday. For those that enjoy bountiful offense, it was hitter’s delight for both teams as the Reds eeked out a 14-13 win that featured a combined 40 hits.

“I told the guard sitting next to me in the second inning that this looks like a 13-12 game,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “Then we had that five-run lead, I said ‘man, I’m nervous.’ Anything can happen in these games, especially in this park.  Our guys kept battling and we scored just enough.”

The highlights:

*Sam LeCure came in with seven scoreless innings over four relief appearances in the making of a strong bid for a bullpen spot. LeCure started vs. Chicago and had a long afternoon for just 2 1/3 innings of work. He allowed six earned runs and eight hits with one walk and no strikeouts.

LeCure had a one-walk, scoreless first inning but the hits started coming in a two-run Cubs second.

“I felt like I made some pitches in the second inning to get out of that deal,” LeCure said. “We had a potential double play that was going to be tough to turn.”

The lasers started coming in the third as four of his five batters faced reached with sharp line drive hits. Alfonso Soriano’s RBI double was the end.

“I made some pitches I was happy with even though I ended up giving up some runs,” LeCure said. “I haven’t pitched in trouble in all of Spring Training. I didn’t have a guy get to second base until today. I understand it’s going to happen. The last inning, they were hitting missiles all over the place. The ball was starting to come up some. Overall, I’m trying to take some positives from it. I pitched in some trouble, which I hadn’t done. I got stretched out more than I had. I think that will bode well for me when it’s time to pick guys for the team.”

*Daniel Ray Herrera, who is trying to earn a bullpen spot, inherited runners on second and third with one out from LeCure and both scored. A sac fly by Soriano followed. After a wild pitch, Darwin Barney’s RBI single on the ground to left field scored another run. Herrera returned in the fourth inning and picked up two outs. Then he allowed two singles and a walk but escaped the bases loaded jam.

*Jared Burton allowed  three earned runs and three hits over two innings with a homer.

*Matt Maloney gave up three earned runs and five hits over two innings with two walks.

*The regular players played seven innings. The lineup had an Opening Day-type look to it.

*Jonny Gomes, who came in batting .071, went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles.

*Scott Rolen (3rd inning) and Joey Votto  (5th inning) slugged their first homers of the spring. Both came against Carlos Zambrano on the first pitch. Rolen’s was a three-run shot and Votto’s was for two runs.

*Speaking of Rolen, I took my turn asking him about the discussion of how many games played. It will be seen in today’s feature. Not surprising, he doesn’t buy into the speculation nor worry about injuries.

“You have 162 games ahead of you. We’re going to be injured,” Rolen said. “We’re going to be beat up, banged up, bruised up and that’s a fact. It’s something that we know. So is everyone else in the league. That’s true. Hopefully we stay away from the big injury.”

*Reds starter Homer Bailey pitched on Friday in a Minor League game for Class A Bakersfield vs. Brewers Minor Leaguers. Bailey gave up four earned runs and five hits over 5 1/3 innings with no walks and seven strikeouts. He threw 76 pitches.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Games a welcomed sight

Today’s 1:05 intrasquad game is scheduled for five innings.

Team White:

Sappelt 8
Cozart 6
Lewis 7
Francisco 5
Hermida 9
Heisey DH
Alonso 3
Valaika 4
Miller 2
Wood 1

Team Gray:

Stubbs 8
Phillips 4
Votto 3
Gomes 7
Bruce 9
Mesoraco DH
Frazier 5
Janish 6
Hanigan 2
Ondrusek 1

Scott Rolen, Edgar Renteria and Ramon Hernandez are not playing in the scrimmage. Miguel Cairo will replace Votto at first base.

“You notice the common denominator here? Age,” manager Dusty Baker said. “If I play them today, do I start off two days in a row with Renteria, Hernandez or Rolen? I don’t think so.”

Baker is trying to program the camp for his veterans to get enough rest to be fresher, longer during the regular season.

*Also scheduled to pitch today:

RHP Daryl Thompson, RHP Jerry Gil, RHP Matt Klinker, RHP Logan Ondrusek, RHP Jordan
Smith, LHP Philippe Valiquette and LHP Jeremy Horst.

The games are generally a welcomed time for players, coaches and writers alike. You get excited for the first workouts to get here and just when you’re getting itchy to get beyond that, the exhibition games start. And just when that seems to get tedious, it’s time for the regular season to open.

“Like anything else out here, you get used to the monotony and you’re ready for a change,” center fielder Drew Stubbs said. “We’ll still obviously have the same workouts we’re doing now but we’ll start mixing in some games. We’ll start seeing some new faces on the other side. It keeps everything fresh for us.”

Some people often ask me how a player “looks” during the early workouts or bullpen session. I’m not a scout or coach so I don’t often pick up on mechanical issues with deliveries or swings. There’s not much to tell from one live BP or a bullpen session. But in a game, you can begin to judge outcomes and how they fare in competition.

Follow me on Twitter at

http://twitter.com/m_sheldon

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 452 other followers

%d bloggers like this: