The Reds and their fans got an early glimpse of the Rebuild Binder tonight, with Jose Peraza starting his first game in a Cincinnati uniform. Peraza, who recently turned 22, was called up for three games to replace Billy Hamilton who is on bereavement leave. Peraza played centerfield. This wasn’t his major league debut though, having played seven games for the LA Dodgers last season.
Jose Peraza was the headliner return for the Reds in the Todd Frazier trade. Scouting reports on Peraza were mixed at the time of the trade. Some saw him as a soon-to-be solid major leaguer. Others felt that Peraza’s limitations – little power, poor plate discipline – explained why two organizations, the Braves and Dodgers had faded on Peraza’s promise. Doug Gray has Jose Peraza rated the Reds #7 prospect, after Yorman Rodriguez.
Service time and playing time considerations have conspired to keep Peraza at Louisville. If the Reds keep the number of days Peraza spends with the major league club this year below 130, his free agency will be delayed a year. That works out to a late-May call up. You can add three more days in AAA now. Because Brandon Phillips turned down at least two trades this offseason, it’s not clear that Peraza has a regular position to play. Barring a significant injury to Phillips or Hamilton, you have to figure Peraza is the heir apparent for Zack Cozart’s spot after the Reds trade their veteran shortstop at the trade deadline. Peraza has been playing shortstop for the Bats, where he has hit .295/.341 and isolated power of .098.
Tonight, Jose Peraza lined the first pitch he saw in a Reds uniform – a 90 mph fastball from Aaron Nola – into left field for a solid hit.
Adlestart Tim Adleman pitched five innings and gave up three runs. He struck out three and walked two. Meh. It’s his third major league start. That’ll do given the pitching injury plague. It won’t do given the Reds offense. TOS. Reminder: The Reds signed Adleman (28), who is filling in for Raisel Iglesias, as a free agent in 2013 after he was released by the Baltimore Orioles.
Peraza Premier Jose Peraza had a single his first at bat and two infield outs the second and third times up. Peraza struck out in his fourth AB on a pitch at his eyes. Hope Peraza’s future is brighter than Timbuk 3’s.
Vote Zack Zack Cozart scored the first run on a heads-up base running play in the first inning. After he singled to lead off, he had advanced to third on a hit and a walk. Brandon Phillips lifted a pop up to Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard. Cozart, in best Billy Hamilton form, tagged up and scored. Vote Zack.
Bullpen Artists Caleb Cotham had two strikeouts and a walk in the sixth. J.C. Ramirez gave up a solo home run in the seventh. Layne Somsen made his major league debut. In 14 innings in Louisville, Somsen had 15 Ks and 6 BBs and an ERA of 1.29. He gave up a ground ball single in the eighth but that’s it.
Duo of Doubles for Duvall Adam Duvall hit two doubles, each driving in a run. He fought off a couple tough pitches in the ninth inning before lining the ball off the bottom of the left field fence.
Slumping Suarez Eugenio Suarez has cooled off after a hot first two weeks. In the previous 21 games, he’s hit .187/.256 with isolated power of .120. He has two home runs, five extra-base hits total, in the past 111 plate appearances. Suarez was 1-for-4, with two strikeouts.
Tonight in Plate Discipline Before Jay Bruce’s leadoff walk in the ninth (he scored), the Reds had zero walks from players who were wearing a number other than 19. Swing, swing, swing, swing, swing, swing, swing, swing, swing, swing. I wish the organization had cared about plate discipline the past 8 years.
Tonight in Plate Blocking The final play of the game wasn’t a violation of the plate blocking rule because the throw itself took the catcher into the baseline. Oh, and Suarez is slow.
Bits of Good News on Pitchers Bryan Price gave positive reports on the progress of Anthony DeSclafani, Raisel Iglesias and Homer Bailey before the game. Each pitcher is progressing pain-free through their recovery programs. Price says the Reds are being overly cautious, in part because of concerns they have been rushing players back. “What I want to make sure is clear is we were never fast-tracking anybody,” said the Reds manager. “But it feels like now what we’re doing is pulling back and trying to make sure everyone has even more time.” (Mark Sheldon)
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.