Minor League Player of the Day: Zach Vincej (Dayton Dragons) had a perfect 4-4 night at the plate.  Vincej’s 4-hits included 3 singles and a double.  He scored 3 runs, drove in 2 RBI, and also drew 2 walks making him a perfect 6 for 6 in reaching base.  The perfect night helped Vincej raise […]

Games Played on 04/23/13 Minor League Player of the Day: Louisville 2B Henry Rodriguez: He went 3 for 4. AAA Louisville 3 – Gwinnett 2 Henry Rodriguez went 3 for 4. Felix Perez went 2 for 3 with a 2B and a BB. Jason Donald went 2 for 4. Mike Hessman doubled. Pedro Villarreal got […]

Games Played on 4/18/2013 Minor League Players of the Day: Several noteworthy performances. Louisville outfielder Felix Perez was 2-for-5 with a walkoff homerun in extra innings. Pensacola scored 8 times in the 8th inning. Donald Lutz was a homerun shy of the cycle and scored twice in the 8th inning. Dragons starter Drew Cisco struck […]

Games Played on 4/17/2013 Minor League Player of the Day: James Allen threw 6.2 innings of shutout baseball. He allowed just 5 hits, walked no one and struck out a batter. AAA Louisville 8 – Columbus 3 Felix Perez (3-for-4, HR, 3 RBI) hit a 3-run homerun in the 2nd inning to put Louisville on […]

Games Played on 04/15/13 Minor League Player of the Day: Bakersfield SP Carlos Contreras: He got the win as he went 6 IP and allowed 1 R on 2 H and 2 BB with 8 K. AAA Columbus 4 – Louisville 1 Jason Donald went 2 for 4. Armando Galarraga got no decision as he […]

For games played 4/6/2013 Minor League Player of the Day: 2010’s 6th round pick, Andrew Cisco, picked up his first win and continued where he left off at Billings last season. He threw 6 innings, allowing only 3 hits and a walk, while striking out 8. The run came on a solo homer. AAA Louisville […]

Minor League Player of the Day: With all the outstanding pitching performances of Opening Day, Mike Hessman’s 2 homerun day was overshadowed.  But you can not deny the man again after homering twice for the second consecutive game! AAA Louisville 6 – Toledo 4 Billy Hamilton went 2-3 with a run scored, RBI, and a […]

Welcome to the end of this series. I hope everyone has enjoyed it. I’ve certainly enjoyed reading your comments and I’ve really appreciated all the feedback from you. Last year, when I made this update, a lot had changed. Ryan Madson was hurt. Todd Frazier was sent down. This time, well, not much has changed. […]

With nothing of importance happening in the Reds’ camp over the past week or so, attention can turn to the battle for the final slot on the 25-man active roster. Assuming that the Reds go with six infielders and that five of those (Votto, Phillips, Cozart and Frazier starting, and Hanrahan at 3B backup) are […]

The Reds play the Chicago White Sox today at Goodyear Park. First pitch at 4:05 p.m. ET and broadcast by WSAI 1360 out of Cincinnati. Shin-Soo Choo continues to sit out after suffering back spasms on Friday. C. Trent Rosecrans has Choo saying: “There’s no reason to push it right now,” Choo said. “It’s spring training. […]

The Bench 2012 Slash Line*: .235/.286/.347 2013 Projection: .250/.310/.380 2012 WAR: -0.2 2012 WAR/600 PA: -0.1 2013 Best Guess WAR/600 PA: 1.0 Projected Difference: +1.1/600 PA *The 2012 bench for the purposes of the above calculations was: Chris Heisey, Scott Rolen, Xavier Paul, Miguel Cairo, Wilson Valdez, Mike Costanzo, Henry Rodriguez, Didi Gregorius, Willie Harris, […]

A longtime reader of the Nation, Rich Thompson, recently traveled to Arizona. He has kindly written up his report of the trip. Take it away, Rich:

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Rich sporting his Reds 1940’s replica jersey.

Rich sporting his Reds 1940’s replica jersey.

Being a baseball and a Cincinnati Reds fan, one of my bucket lists to do’s was to go to Spring Training and this year, I made it happen.

Probably as with many fans, the challenges to make such a trip happen often relate to scheduling (personal & professional) and finances. This year, with a little planning, I made such a pilgrimage to Arizona to take in three games over a four day period.

To share the experience, I was able to persuade my good friend Mike Rankin from Chicago, IL (who is a big White Sox fan) to meet me in Arizona to take in some of the games. Naturally, we both had to see the Reds take on the White Sox in Glendale and see his Sox take on the Tribe in Goodyear.

Ok, enough of the preliminaries and pleasantries; now let’s get into the reviews of the parks and players.

The Parks
Overall Thoughts & Reflections on Goodyear

Goodyear

Goodyear

All in all, Goodyear is a very nice and intimate facility. Sight lines are very good throughout the park but if you’re expecting a place to sit in the shade, there are only two locations; one is off of the 3rd base line and the other is in right field, which acts as a club dining area too! In both locations, be prepared to pay a bit extra. However, spring ticket prices are extremely reasonable; most tickets are $30.00 and under. Another thing which was great about the Goodyear experience is that the ushers will pretty much let you sit anywhere except the club area once you are admitted into the park and if other seats are available. This is nice, for this also allows you to sit in various locations to get a different perspective of the park and the game.

If you wish to go and see the players warm up and work out, you will have to walk, bike (Yes, fans actually bike to the games! I found this to be very cool since I am a cyclist myself), or drive to the practice fields, which are about a mile away from the park. It should also be noted before the games start they have buses bring the players over from the practice facilities to the main field. Parking is $5.00 dollars per car to park next to the stadium and it is free if you park in one of the auxiliary lots which is a nice walk and not too far away in my opinion.

Overall Thoughts & Reflections Glendale/Camel Back Ranch, Spring Training home of Chicago (AL) and Los Angeles (NL)

Glendale/Camel Back Ranch

Glendale/Camel Back Ranch

Unlike Goodyear, which had an intimate feel to it, taking in a game at Glendale/Camel Back Ranch felt much more like attending a regular season MLB facility. In my estimation it is almost twice as big and Goodyear and it offered many more amenities. Even with that said, ticket prices were still incredibly reasonable, I believe my buddy, the White Sox fan, paid less than $20.00 dollars per ticket and we were on the 3rd base line/2nd row back from the Reds dugout. It also worth mentioning parking is free at Glendale/Camelback Ranch.

Visually, Glendale/Camel Back Ranch is a stunning facility and the practice fields are literally connected to the main park, which you can access once you enter it. To make the practice fields even more inviting, the planners literally create a town park atmosphere with shade trees, lush grass, and running water features to sit around as you enjoy the practices of the players and coaches. Yes, I think that this facility is just another example of two bigger market organizations (White Sox & Dodgers) with deeper pockets showing off what they can do. However, I still applaud the Dodgers, White Sox, and the town of Glendale for building such an outstanding fan friendly venue.

Impressions of the Players

Please keep in mind that my sample size was small since I only took in three games, but I did notice some things that Reds fans might find interesting. I will start with the pitchers and then cover/highlight the position players, and then the prospects that I saw.

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Blame Chad for creating this mess.

Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.

You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.