Who says that you can’t be in two places at once?
Today, the Reds took part in their first split squad affair of the season, with half the players heading off to Peoria to face the Mariners, and the other half staying home to fall to the Chicago White Sox by the score of 4-3.
Offensive Side of the Diamond:
The majority of the starting lineup stayed at the complex in Goodyear as Billy Hamilton, Brandon Phillips and Todd Frazier were the only ones missing. Those who did stick around did not have the best of luck.
One-man glad he was in Goodyear this afternoon was Reds right fielder, Jay Bruce. With the defining cataclysmic blast of the early part of the year, Bruce put the Reds ahead 2-0 in the first inning, drawing “BRUUUUCEE” calls from many in attendance, and even more at home. Jay finished the day going 2-for-3.
Fellow middle-of-the-order companion, Joey Votto, continued his mild slump to start the year by going 0-for-3 with two more strikeouts. Thus far, Votto is 2-for-12 on the season with 5 K’s. Don’t jump to the worst case scenario just yet, he is allowed a slow start more than any other member of the club.
The Reds only other run in this game came the next inning on a RBI single off the bat of Opening Day roster hopeful, Chris Nelson. He drove in a man with similar intentions, Roger Bernadina, to give the club their third and final run of the game.
After starter Felipe Paulino was relieved of duty, the White Sox bullpen, a true collection of Minor Leaguers stifled the Reds Minor League batters. Take that as you will, but only three hits were mustered over the final six innings.
Reds’ Toeing the Rubber:
Former Arizona State Sun Devil Mike Leake took to the hill in what was his first appearance of the spring after being pushed back on multiple occasions. He served up a RBI single to former Reds bopper Adam Dunn in the first for his only run allowed in his two innings of work.
Taking over from there was the Cuban Missile, Aroldis Chapman. He got himself into trouble by plunking Adam Eaton, centerfielder for the Chicago White Sox who has elite speed once on the bases. Not even Chapman and his effective pickoff move could convince Eaton not to dart towards second, as he swiped the bag. From there, first baseman Alex Liddi brought him home.
Chapman finished the day with three strikeouts over his two innings of work. He now has given up a run in two consecutive outings; but also, has pitched multiple innings of work over that same timeframe. It may be a simple coincidence and the big lefthander could just be getting more work in, or this could be a subtle preview of how we will be used come the start of the regular season.
Today, Tim Crabbe played the role of reliever in distress as he served up the final two runs on the scoreboard. Working just two innings, his two runs were earned and ultimately, earned him the loss after the club was unable to push across a run for him.
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Tomorrow afternoon, the Reds lock up with a divisional opponent for the first time this spring when they clash with the Chicago Cubs.
Looking to continue his brilliant work thus far, Alfredo Simon will take to the hill getting the start. Tune in to WLW at 3:05 for coverage.
Tags: Cincinnati Reds