While most Reds fans were rightfully focused on their team's Opening Day victory over the defending World Champions, one of the club's minor league outfielders had himself a game last night. Ronnie Dawson, who was selected in the MiLB Rule 5 Draft this past offseason put on a show fans of the Cincinnati Reds' Triple-A affiliate.
The Louisville Bats opened their 2022 campaign against the St. Paul Saints earlier this week. The Bats dropped the first two games of the season, but the team rallied to take down the Minnesota Twins' Triple-A affiliate by a score of 5-4.
Reds' Triple-A outfielder starred in last night's game.
The win was in no small attributed to the fantastic play of outfielder Ronnie Dawson. With one on and two outs in the top of the first inning, Twins' prospect Curtis Terry lifted a flyball down the line in left field and Dawson ranged over to make an outstanding sliding catch. Dawson robbed Terry of an RBI and kept the game knotted at zero.
As great as the catch was, it was the go-ahead home run in the bottom of the eighth inning that will have the Bats' players buzzing this morning. The Bats, who trailed 3-1 entering the bottom-half of the eighth inning, saw the lead shrink by one following a two-out RBI single courtesy of Jake Bauers.
With Louisville trailing 4-2, Ronnie Dawson launched a 1-1 pitch from Jordan Gore over the fence in right field. Bauers and fellow outfielder TJ Friedl scored, and Dawson's round tripper put the Bats on top for good 5-4. Fernando Cruz shut the door in the ninth inning and sent the Bats' fans home happy.
Dawson was part of Reds camp earlier this spring and found his way into a handful of Cactus League games. The former Houston Astros' outfielder slashed .400/.500/.600 in eight plate appearances with the Reds this spring.
Ronnie Dawson's bat speed and strength made him one of the best college hitters prior to the 2016 MLB Draft and was a big reason why the Astros selected him with the 61st overall pick. Dawson will get regular playing time with the Louisville Bats this season, and may find his way back to the big leagues. Dawson appeared in three games for Houston last season.