Friday, March 23, 2012

Reds turn away Rangers behind strong start by Latos


Goodyear, Arizona -- The Redlegs (9-11-1) and the Rangers (5-14) burned the midnight oil, so to speak, on Thursday as the two tangled in a late night bout at Goodyear Ballpark. Backed by a strong outing from starter Mat Latos coupled with an onslaught of offense, Cincinnati came away with a convincing 6-2 victory. Here's a recap of the good, the bad, and the notables from the affair:

The Good:
- Mat Latos lowered his ERA on the spring to 1.93 after limiting Texas to four hits, one run and no walks in five frames. He improved to 2-0.
- Nick Masset tossed a perfect inning of relief in the sixth, while Logan Ondrusek and Sam LeCure each added a scoreless frame themselves.
- Cinci banged out 14 hits, 7 of them coming via doubles.
- Zack Cozart and Devin Mesoraco both smacked a pair of doubles while scoring a run. Cozart now has six in the preseason.
- The team was an efficient 6-for-13 with RISP.
- Dioner Navarro clubbed his second homer of the spring -- a solo shot in the seventh.
- Miguel Cairo pitched in a couple of singles off the bench as well.

The Bad:
- Drew Stubbs was hitless in three at-bats. He's hitting .231 this spring.
- Chris Heisey's batting average dipped to an anemic .143 after an 0-for-3 performance.
- After Thursday's contest Reds catchers are hitting .185 (Ryan Hanigan), .200 (Mesoraco) and .160 (Navarro).
- Juan Francisco was 0-for-2 with a strikeout to lower his average to .161. He hasn't done much to help his cause at making the Opening Day roster this month.

The Notables:
- A crowd of 4,522 turned out to take in the action.
- Ryan Madson was supposed to pitch in a minor league game on Thursday, but that didn't happen. The closer has yet to appear in live action this spring after coming down with a sore elbow in camp. The team will turn to Sean Marshall as its closer if Madson isn't ready by the start of the season.
- The Redlegs are at it again on Friday night as they travel to Peoria to battle the Padres. Bronson Arroyo will take the mound opposite of former Red Edinson Volquez.Marshall and Carlos Fisher are slated to relieve Arroyo. First pitch is at 10:05 ET and the game can be heard on 700 WLW.

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