Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Reds Blanked by Cubbies, 9-0

There was certainly no joy in Mudville today, nor in Goodyear.

Outside of Joey at the Bat, the Redleg nine looked as miserable as could be on a picturesque Arizona Saturday afternoon.  The nearly 6,000 fans in attendance who neglected to have a care in the world watched as the Cubs blasted the Reds by a final of 9-0.  It is the second time the club has been blanked this spring.

Offensive Side of the Diamond:

It started at the top, where it seemingly will all year long for Cincinnati, with Billy Hamilton.  Similarly to yesterday, he did not reach base via a hit, but rather a walk, which in his case, is just as lethal. 

He promptly swiped second as Zack Cozart went down swinging, then made his mad dash for third with Joey Votto in the box.  With his two first inning stolen bases, he now has six with zero caught stealing’s.  After both Votto and Jay Bruce walked to load the bases, neither Todd Frazier nor Devin Mesoraco could bring anyone home, in what was the story of the day for the anemic Reds offense.

Just as we were discussing the slow start of Joey Votto, he goes 2-for-2 with a walk and reminds us why we are bearing witness to greatness.  The word can be overused in modern culture, but Votto represents everything positive about it.

Also going for a two hit day was new Red, Skip Schumaker.  Pitchers continue to rue having to face the utility man as he raised his average to a stupendous .533 at day’s end.  In what will more than likely be nothing more than spot starts and pinch hit appearances, Schumaker’s contributions may be overlooked by a majority of the fan base, but he may just be able to build a small cult following with his tenacious attitude towards playing the game.

Reds’ Toeing the Rubber:

As bad as things were in the batters’ box, they were as equally bad on the slab for those slinging on Reds gear this afternoon.

Curiously enough, the first pitcher to throw four innings this spring was Alfredo Simon.  Without looking too deep into the matter, it just may be that Mat Latos won’t be ready for the beginning of the season, and it will be Simon taking his spot in the rotation so that an option is not used on a Minor Leaguer. 

His performance was not particularly inspiring as he surrendered five earned over his four innings of work, striking out only one batter while facing the Cubs B-lineup.  (Which very well may wind up being their A-lineup…which says something about the Cubs.) 

The good times have yet to roll for Chad Rogers out of relief, whose ERA continues to perpetually hover around 10.  He worked two innings and allowed a run, lowering his ERA, as discouraging as that may be.

Having the worst day of anyone may have been Logan Ondrusek as he took over with a clean slate in the 8th inning.  He then went on to walk the first four batters he faced, before giving up an additional two-RBI single.  Mercifully, he finally recorded a strikeout before being taken out of his misery. 

* * *

With the clocks moving forward this evening, the Reds will now be coming to you on a 4 o’clock schedule, as opposed to 3. 

Johnny Cueto will look to rebound from his horrific effort the last time out as the club will face the Los Angeles of Anaheim.  The LA broadcast team will be down to cover the game, so again, those lucky enough to have MLB.tv, there will be a way to watch.  If you cannot, as always, check in here for everything you’ll need to know concerning Reds baseball.

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