Narron finally admits the possibility that Jr might not be ready for Opening Day in this article from the Enquirer:

Narron was talking about which outfielders might make the roster when he said:

“A lot’s going to depend on if Griff can play. We don’t know if he’s going to be able to play.”

There’s still plenty of time for Griffey to be ready, but time is beginning to run short.

And what does Griffey say about this?

Griffey, who is still recovering from a broken left hand that he suffered in an accident at home in December, would not answer a direct question about whether he thought he’d be ready.

“I’ll let you guys (in the media) know when I’m ready to play,” he said.

There has also been arguments on local talk radio as to whether Griffey is dragging this injury out so that the team doesn’t move him to RF.

Griffey strongly disputed talk that there is more to his not playing than just the hand – namely, his reluctance to move to right field.

“If you think I’m that shallow, (the media) doesn’t need to talk to me at all,” he said.

…and I’ll just take my ball and go home.

This is the side of Griffey that infuriates me, the one that sounds like a spoiled brat when talking to the media b/c they ask him something he doesn’t like. My question would be…if the hand only bothered you when you hit, yet you can take BP and play in a simulated game, why can’t you play in a real game?

Fay’s answer if Griffey isn’t ready?

If Griffey isn’t ready, Josh Hamilton could complete his comeback in one spring, going from roster long shot to spring training force to Opening Day starter in six weeks.

I’m thrilled with the Hamilton story and believe he’s well worth a roster spot, but the odds of someone being basically out of baseball for 4 years and never really playing above A ball and suddenly being a productive big league starter are so long I’m not sure you could calculate them without a super computer.

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From the Reds Notebook:

Reds manager Jerry Narron said it’s unlikely that the Reds will break camp with four left-handed-hitting outfielders.

“Very unlikely,” Narron said. “But it could happen.”

That bodes well for Chris Denorfia and Norris Hopper, the right-handed hitters competing for an extra outfielder spot.

The other outfielder, Bubba Crosby, is a left handed hitter. BUT, he’s on a split major league contract and doesn’t have options. Both Denorfia and Hopper have options. And while Fay discounts Conine’s effect on this situation, I think it could convince them to keep Crosby.

And in more bad news….looks like the Lizard is hurting…

Right-hander Elizardo Ramirez, one of the pitchers competing for the fifth spot in the rotation, hasn’t pitched in a game in more than a week.

Ramirez’s shoulder, which ended his season early last August, is bothering him. The setback isn’t thought to be major.

Uh, huh. Right. I expect word any day now of an upcoming surgery on the Lizard’s shoulder….the Reds medical staff rarely misdiagnoses a problem.