The Reds host the Seattle Mariners in Goodyear today. The game will be broadcast on WLW-700 radio at 9:05 p.m. ET.
Because it’s a night game, the lineup won’t be out for a few more hours. Will update this post when it becomes available.
- Jose Peraza SS
- Alex Blandino 2B
- Joey Votto 1B
- Adam Duvall LF
- Jay Bruce RF
- Yorman Rodriguez DH
- Eric Jagielo 3B
- Phillip Ervin CF
- Tucker Barnhart C
We do know that lefty Cody Reed will make another start for the Reds. Also expected to pitch are Chris O’Grady, Carlos Contreras, Caleb Cotham, Ryan Mattheus and Blake Wood. Cotham, who came to the Reds in the Chapman trade, gave up five hits and four runs in his appearance on Wednesday. Most people think he has a good chance of making the Opening Day roster, but not with performances like that.
Facing a good chunk of the Cubs Opening Day lineup, Robert Stephenson turned in a solid start yesterday, in front of a big crowd in Mesa. The 23-year-old struck out three, including Dexter Fowler and Jason Heyward, and walked none over three innings (box score). Layne Somson pitched another shutout inning out of the bullpen. He’s made four appearances and yet to give up a run. He’s struck out three and walked three over four innings.
Reminder: Grant Freking’s bullpen projection.
News and Reading
• Reds general manager Dick Williams says the Reds won’t trade Joey Votto as part of rebuild-reboot.
“Joey’s the cornerstone of our lineup right now, and [he] will be in the future,” Williams said. “I think the contract we have him signed to is very reasonable for a small-market team, making that kind of commitment. The way salaries have gone, it looks like a very reasonable and fair contract.
“He’s just such an important piece of the lineup, so I can’t imagine not having him there to build around. That’s my goal. I wouldn’t say ‘never,’ but having Joey in the middle of the lineup is pretty special.”
Williams is right about Votto’s contract. By the time Joey Votto starts making $25 million/year (he earns $20 million this year), teams in the free market will be paying that much for 2.5 WAR. Votto was a 7.4 fWAR player last year. The going rate for one WAR in the open market this offseason was $8 million. So Votto’s season was worth about $60 million last year. He was paid $14 million.
• Our friend Justin Merry has an interesting breakdown for projections of the Reds young players – prospects and major league – based on their age.
Scott Schebler was acquired in the Todd Frazier trade. He just arrived in the big leagues last season, but it’s worth remembering that he is the same ages as both Billy Hamilton and Tucker Barnart. Schebler does grade out as having a better bat than either of those two, primarily due to his substantial power. But while Schebler players corner outfield, as has some questions about his defense, Hamilton and Barnhart are considered plus (if not elite) defenders at a premier defensive position. As a result, Hamilton and Barnhart are both projected as providing value, while Schebler projects as a replacement player. Seems about right.
• Mark Sheldon (MLB.com) has Zack Cozart’s reaction to playing in his first game yesterday.
Cozart had the unfortunate circumstances of his injury on his mind when he had to touch first base on his single.
“I’m not going to say I wasn’t thinking about hitting the base on the base hit, but I wasn’t thinking about it as much,” Cozart said. “I will tell you that when [Scott] Schebler hit the line drive next and I had to run, I definitely did not think about having to hit second. I was running hard, hit second and was feeling good.”
• Pete Rose to be inducted in Hall of Fame!
Probably not the HOF Pete had in mind.
• Veteran writer Hal McCoy (Dayton Daily News) expressed a strong opinion on the Reds second base situation when he was asked about dat:
Q: What do you see the Reds doing with Brandon Phillips and Jose Peraza? — JAY, Englewood.
A: They acquired Peraza from the Dodgers to play second base, believing Phillips would accept a trade to rejoin Dusty Baker in Washington. Phillips threw them a devastating curveball by refusing the trade. If I managed the Reds, and thank the baseball gods that I don’t, I’d put Phillips on the bench and play Peraza, part of the team’s future. Phillips, though, is one of the few fan attractions left so he’ll probably play and Peraza will be on the bench and play backup roles.
Reminder: Nick Carrington on how we’ll remember BP.
• Reds adding a rooftop patio area to Great American Ball Park.
The Cincinnati Reds have created a new social gathering space in the left-field corner of Great American Ball Park. The Cincinnati Bell Fioptics District Rooftop, the name of the new destination, is a rooftop patio situated behind the left-field stands in the upper deck. The patio contains tables and chairs, drink rails and televisions to accommodate about 380 fans. Single-game tickets cost $15 and include general admission to sit in seats among three sections of outfield seats. There is a limited view to the field from the rooftop patio. One free drink comes with the ticket cost, whether it’s a beer, soda or bottled water.
A cynic might conclude the Reds are providing fans alternatives, in this case drinking, over watching baseball.
Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.