Went to see the GCL Reds play the GCL Pirates today…it wasn’t a good game, Reds losing 9-0 and it was over 100 (heat index), but it was a very nice day.
Spent the entire game talking to two of the Reds recent draft picks, Bo Lanier (RHP, 10th pick) and Kevin Haltiwanger (RHP, 29th pick). Two very nice guys who were kind enough to answer some of my stupid questions…But one more “sir” might have sent me over the edge.
Bo started in Billings as a reliever, but has been sent to the GCL to develop a new pitch and become a starter. His ERA is 4 something he said, but said he had one really bad start and has thrown well the last 3 times out.
Kevin is a starter who, by his stats that I saw on MinorLeague.com, has been very effective with an ERA under 3.00.
They said that at this level, the staff is on a 45 pitch limit. I got the impression that they’re not enthralled with the tandem pitching concept, especially when you’re a reliever as you don’t get enough work.
There are a large number of Latin players on the team and language can sometimes be a problem. The players that don’t speak any English are given classes to learn the language. They said it’s tough to communicate with a catcher when they don’t speak the same language.
I asked them both about #1 draft pick Jay Bruce and both said, “He can hit”. Both were very positive about Bruce’s abilities when asked. He did misplay a ball in CF badly today, but that could happen to anyone.
I’ve got pictures from this also, Chad…