Thursday, February 28, 2013

A huge midweek edition of Reds rumblings

The Reds offense erupted for 14 runs on Wednesday to blow past the Arizona Diamondbacks at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. The Redlegs scored 13 of their runs in the final four frames, including six in the sixth inning and another five in the ninth inning. Xavier Paul, Donald Lutz, and Yorman Rodriguez each homered.

It marked just the second win of the spring in six tries for Cincinnati, but have no fear, these games don't count in the standings, and it is still a long way off from Opening Day. I digress.

For your viewing pleasure, I have scoured the web high and low to collect some interesting baseball and Reds-related reading material. No need for thanks, folks. Just enjoy the post.

+ Brandon Phillips is "absolutely thrilled" to be representing the United States in the World Baseball classic. Barry Bloom of wrote a nice little feature on how Phillips received word of his invite, in addition to what lies ahead for the two-time Gold Glove second basemen. Apparently, Team USA manager Joe Torre didn't know what Twitter was before his chat with Phillips. The former Yankees skipper had to consult with his daughter to find out.

+ On Wednesday, Johnny Cueto made his first return to the mound since being injured in Game 1 of the NLDS. His stat line wasn't pretty (2 IP, 4 R, 5 H), but he said "he felt real good."

+ Former Reds farmhand Yasmani Grandal and Nick Hundley are currently locked in a battle to claim the San Diego Padres starting catching job, writes Scott Miller of CBS Sports. Grandal won over the primary duties last season by impressing with his bat, but his positive PED test over the offseason will force him to spend the first 50 games on the sideline. Miller discusses how Hundley is coping with the situation.

+ Joey Votto still hasn't decided whether he is going to actually play in the upcoming World Baseball Classic despite being added to Team Canada's roster last week. His time to make up his mind is running out, though.

+ Jay Jaffe of Hit and Run takes a look at how past case studies may shed some light as to how Aroldis Chapman will handle his transition from the bullpen to the starting rotation.

+ On Saturday, the Reds will officially open up single game ticket sales for the 2013 regular season beginning at 9 a.m. Fans will have the chance to purchase tickets to virtually any of the club's 81 scheduled home games with the exception of Opening Day. Are you in need of a printable 2013 Reds schedule? Well, here you go!

+ Here is a brief recap of Tuesday's 7-5 loss to the Padres.

+ Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors recently conducted an interview with Jay Bruce on why he chose the sports agency that he did (Sosnick Cobbe Sports). It offers insight on an area of professional baseball that fans don't normally hear about.

+ Reds season ticket sales are projected to soar to a level not seen since the team acquired Ken Griffey Jr. in 2000, according to the Dayton Business Journal. Season ticket sales are projected to finish with a 15% increase from last year's sales total.

+ New Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke admitted that money was his biggest motivating factor in signing with LA this offseason. Hey, at least he is honest.

+ The Reds play a split-squad on Thursday. Mike Leake (8-9, 4.58 ERA last year) faces Arizona right-hander Ian Kennedy (15-12, 4.02) at Goodyear. Aroldis Chapman (5-5, 1.51) takes on Colorado’s Juan Nicasio (2-3, 5.28) at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale. Both games begin at 3:05 p.m. EST.

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