The Reds played at home against Seattle with the same roster as the one that played the A’s yesterday, plus Devin Mesoraco catching and batting third. Still no pitch speed shown on the Goodyear Ballpark scoreboard. Fans all around me were asking about it. Seriously. This is the last game of my trip.

Notes from Reds vs. Mariners

 Rookie Davis looked good in his 4.2 innings. Yes, Davis gave up a few extra-base hits. But he was throwing strikes (1 BB), striking out seven Seattle hitters including a bunch of major league players. He was the beneficiary of a tremendous defensive play by Adam Duvall, but also the victim of shoddy defense and a couple bloop singles. Only three of the seven runs he gave up were earned. Davis contributed on offense with a long home run to left field.

Rookie Davis warming up.

 Zack Cozart continued his strong spring with a long double to right-center, a walk and a superb defensive play deep in the hole at shortstop. This was his third day in a row playing and he stayed in through seven innings.

Zack Cozart swinging

 Devin Mesoraco started and played five innings. He’s really having trouble timing/recognizing off-speed pitches.

Desmond Jennings hit a long home run to left-center field , walked and played solid defense in CF.

Desmond Jennings

Hernan Iribarren had two more bad infield throws. A couple days ago, he made wild throw to first on an easy play at 2B. Today, he tossed two routine throws past the 1B – one high, one way to the left – this time from 3B. Both errors came with two outs and runners scoring. Shaky, to say the least.

Hernan Iribarren after his second error of the day

Scott Schebler walked twice against tough left-hander Drew Smyly. Jose Peraza homered down the left field line and singled. Back-up catcher Stuart Turner was used solely as a pinch hitter.

T.J. Friedl replaced Jennings in CF starting with the sixth inning. Friedl (5’10”, 170 lbs.) got an AB in the seventh, lining the ball down the first place line but it was stabbed by the Mariners’ first baseman on a great play.

T.J. Friedl tossing before the game

Defensive play of the game was an easy choice today. Adam Duvall leapt over the left field fence to grab a ball off the bat of Danny Valencia. Duvall made another nice play charging in, catching a fly ball and doubling a runner off first base.

Notes from Reds vs. Cubs in Vegas

These observations are based on reading the box score. I wasn’t at the game.

 Reds pitching gave up 21 earned runs. None by pitchers who will likely make the Opening Day roster. The only one with a chance is Tim Adelman, who started and gave up six runs in the first inning.

 Jesse Winker hit a home run and double, another good sign regarding his health. Arismeldy Alcantara had three hits. Patrick Kivlehan doubled and played 1B after Joey Votto left the game. Billy Hamilton went 0-4.

In other news

Michael Lorenzen feels like he’s in too small of a box just being a reliever. Wants to be a two-way player. Reds are open to using him in more ways, like pinch hitting and running, but apparently not as a starting pitcher. Interesting article by Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer. 

Raisel Iglesias, who hurt himself slipping in the shower, played catch yesterday. Homer Bailey will play catch for first time since his elbow surgery tomorrow. Both reports by Buchanan.

 Price says it is “unlikely” that Devin Mesoraco will make the Opening Day roster, “not enough time to build up,” reports Buchanan. That relates to the next piece of news.

 Reds are leaning toward keeping Stuart Turner, reports Buchanan. Turner is the Rule 5 catcher from the Minnesota Twins. If Turner doesn’t make the 25-man roster for Opening Day, the Reds have to offer him back to the Twins. Turner has been impressive this spring, particularly on defense. He would back up Tucker Barnhart if Mesoraco isn’t ready on April 3.

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.

Join the conversation! 25 Comments

  1. Winker also hit a ball that would have hit about 4 feet high on the wall if the outfielder hadn’t been camped under it. “Just missed it,” as they say.

    The ball must have been flying today, because to me, it looked like Winker popped up the aforementioned pitch and it went about 365 feet.

    Hit homer was replayed from the side view and it showed really well that Winker has the ability to clear his hips during weight transfer and really sell out for pull power. If he’s ever going to be better than average (2.0 WAR), he’ll need to tap into that more often.

    • That one swing where Winker turned on the pitch and drove the ball over the right-centerfield fence may have been the most significant event of the spring. The Old Cossack certainly got goose bumps after that HR.

  2. Reds pitching only gave up 29 runs today. Oh, boy – really looking forward to a year where “victory” will be to NOT be in last place in our division…. again.

    • Steve mentioned that many of the runs were given up by pitchers who won’t be on the team. I don’t see the point in wallowing in pessimism a week before opening day.

  3. Does anyone know if Price has stated when he will reveal the starting rotation?

  4. If I may offer my thanks to Steve and Doug, who have made wonderful efforts to share their time and insights on spring training. Hope the young players develop and that Bailey and Disco return healthy. God love the Reds this year!

  5. pitch speed = fun for fans … but bad for the pitchers

  6. Thanks for the reports, Steve, and godspeed on your travels home.

    Soooo…..what do you guys think? Adelman for opening day pitcher? I had the pleasure of watching the game on MLB and he was out over the middle and waist high on nearly every pitch. And predictably, that didn’t fare too well against the Cubs starting lineup. I caught Votto chuckling after Bryant jacked the first pitch way out to right. Seems he knew what was coming that day.

    I don’t what this means for setting the rotation but it appears that either Arroyo or Adelman will take the fifth spot initially. I’m hoping the Reds have a plan to bring up some of the young starters soon after.

  7. Best results from this spring: health of Zack Cozart, progress of Sal Romano and Rookie Davis, power flashed by Jesse Winker, slow but steady return of Devin Mesoraco, on the spot reports from Steve Mancuso and Doug Gray. Thank you gentlemen! Trying to ignore the rest – it’s still just spring training after all.

    • Cozart has played well this spring. Can’t help but wonder if he is busting his tail to get of Cincy ASAP.

      • More likely, I think he wants to finally put it all together for a full, healthy season.

      • Whether he plays for the Reds or not, Cozart is playing for his next contract. Plus he’s always struck me as a 100% all-out player by nature.

  8. This is from the previous journal that Steve posted:

    • Drew Storen isn’t concerned about his declining velocity (C. Trent Rosecrans). His manager also isn’t worried.

    “As Price points out, Storen isn’t being asked to close with the Reds…..

    Why does a decline in velocity only matter if you’re a closer? To me, it is relevant no matter when you pitch. That remark from Price disturbs me.

    • Declining velocity is never good. It’s usually the first sign that something is wrong, be it injury or over the hill

  9. Great analysis and observations for the last 9 days. Many good tidbits of info came from those 9 days. Many that weren’t so good too. Pitching was supposed to be the hallmark of this re-build. Again and again, the pitching showed it is the team’s Achilles heel. The rotation is going to be brutal early on and the bullpen only slightly better than last year. The first half of 2017 is looking like it will shape up much like the first half of 2016. Deja vu all over again.
    One week until Opening Day. Very little excitement for this Reds team in 2017. Sorting is very unexciting work.
    More retreads and the undeads in 2017. Feldman, Arroyo, Adelman, Alcantara, Raburn, Jennings, Storen, Wood, and Leutge. That is 1/3 of the 25 man roster filled out with dead wood.
    Thank you Bob Castellini for bringing “winning” baseball back to Cincinnati. The legacy of Bob Castellini will be forged from the 2014-2017+ years, not the 2007-2013 teams. Big Bob built a winning team from other GM’s players. But now the this is his era, and look what he has brought us? The second worst record in MLB 2 years running now.

    • Golly. Sounds like they shouldn’t bother playing at all this season.

      • What? A threepeat is on the line for 2nd worst record in MLB. We can’t throw the towel in on that.
        Remember that iconic photo of Castellini at the end of the 2013 season in Pittsburgh after that wild card game loss? That is what should be the next bronze statue for GABP. Castellini vowed changes after that WC loss. And we are now entering our 4th season of painfully losing baseball since that photo.
        I had a bad weekend and morning today. Optimism is not my word of the day today. Attitude adjustment has been ordered and supposed to be here before next Monday.

    • I like this for the Reds’ theme song thing year “Retreats and Undeads”

      You’re a little more pessimistic than I am but I’m not too high on this team or the rebuild so far #RebuildBinder. Ok, the injury to Disco is a huge blow but to not even consider Lorenzen as a starter after Disco’s injury, seems short-sighted. If the concern is medical, that news hasn’t leaked at all.

      Raburn was apparently released earlier. Storen was supposed to shore up the pen but his velocity has been underwhelming. I’m not as sour on Alcantara nor Jennings as you. Wood can be a solid pitcher. I am excited about some of the young arms yet to come. I think there are 3 starting pitchers out of Garrett, Reed, Stephenson, Romano, Davis this year, and see Castillo on the horizon as a strong possibility. Disco has to come back sooner or later. Bailey may recover but not holding my breath. I think Iglesias and Lorenzen will be fine in the pen. Cingrani may have his first strong season since his rookie year. That’s 4 good RP with Wood. Feldman should at least eat some innings. Arroyo? Well, I’ve got nothing there but hopes that it isn’t a disaster.

  10. May I retract what I said earlier today about it being ok about Adleman starting?

    • I hope the Reds are as flexible in their thinking as you are…

    • It really is time to thank Adleman for the innings he gave the Reds last year, and I hope he enjoyed his stint in the bigs, and send him on his way. Or to Louisville.

  11. The Old Cossack has been decidedly in favor of Adleman making the 25-man roster as the 5th start coming out of spring training, but after yesterday’s performance on top of his struggles during spring training, I don’t see how Adleman even makes the bullpen coming out of spring training. That should leave Davis, Garrett and Romano battling for the 5th starter role.

    No matter which of those 3 pitchers make the final cut for the 25-man roster, I don’t see him making it through 3 months in the starting rotation without some significant struggles this season that result in a trip back to AAA and a replacement option being summoned for next man up. I’m also not sure Feldman will make it through in the starting rotation until Disco or Bailey return, so all three young pitchers should get a shot in the starting rotation during the 2017 season and none of the 3 rookies should gain an entire season of major league service time.

  12. The countdown to the end of spring training is here, just 3 more cactus league games before the 2 exhibition games in Louisville and Dayton, then opening day is upon us.

    Some of the Old Cossack’s highlights from spring training:

    Scott Schebler => .379 OBP & .213 ISO w/ 13.8% BB% & 12.1% SO%
    Adam Duvall => .321 OBP & .234 ISO w/ 9.5% BB% & 15.1% SO%
    If Schebler and Duvall can carry those performances into the regular season, the corner OF positions look like a strength of the team for quite a while. especially with Winker waiting in the wings.

    Zack Cozart => 1.048 OPS and making all the plays at SS
    Cozart looks like he’s ready to come out of the chute like he did last season after an additional off season of rehabilitation and recovery after his total reconstructive knee surgery. This season, Cozart has eschewed the knee brace and appears to be full go again. Let’s hope Price learned a lesson from last season and staggers some regular off days in the schedule for Cozart during the 1st half of the season to keep him strong and healthy.

    Eugenio Suarez => .793 OPS and only 1 error during spring training.
    Suarez has done nothing during spring training to temper my enthusiasm for a breakout season in 2017.

    Jesse Winker => .189 ISO & .841 OPS during spring training
    Winker looks poised to let his performance during 2017 tell his detractors to put a sock in it! His quiet profesionalism shall prevail.

    Devon Mesoraco => The slow and steady conditioning during spring training has Mesoraco on the verge of a healthy return to the major league roster. He doesn’t appear to have any lingering health issues from multiple surgeries the past 2 years, but he still has not regained his stroke at the plate. There doesn’t appear to be any physical limitations to his improved hitting, just knocking 2 season of rust off before his confidence and feel at the plate returns.

    • These are all good developments, yes…. Health of Cozart and progress of Mes are the two biggest in my opinion. The ST stats I could care less about.

      • Absolutely agree regarding spring training stats in general, but the manner in which both Duvall and Schebler produced is very encouraging. The knock, especially on Duvall, has been a lack of plate discipline. The high BB% and low SO% while maintaining power speaks to the focus and efforts by both hitters. Certainly, the regular season produces more challenges to maintain those results.

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About Steve Mancuso

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.


2017 Reds


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