If there’s one thing the Reds aren’t going to be able to withstand, it’s the injury bug. Already, Edwin Encarnacion is out, and the Reds are going to need him back at full strength soon if they intend to compete. (Alex Gonzalez has been hurt, too, but that probably helps the Reds.)
Now, it’s Joey Votto and Nick Masset. Votto is going to undergo some more tests:
Joey Votto’s bout with dizziness continues to perplex the first baseman.
The latest recurrence of the ailment came Saturday night when Votto had to be removed from the game in the fourth inning — the second time in five days that the 25-year-old slugger was pulled from a contest.
After the team returns home following Sunday’s contest, Votto will undergo further examination to determine what exactly is causing the problems. In the meantime, his unavailability leaves the team short-handed.
In addition, Masset has a left oblique strain:
A left oblique strain has sidelined the right-hander since May 7, dealing the Reds’ bullpen a major blow, as Masset hadn’t allowed a run in any of his previous six appearances and has only surrendered one earned run all season.
Manager Dusty Baker and the front office evaluated Masset’s status on Sunday and opted against the disabled list, for now.
With upcoming series against Philadelphia and Cleveland, and a bullpen taxed by Saturday’s 16-inning contest, there may be no choice but to make a move.
I asked it earlier, and I ask again: is Walt Jocketty asleep at the switch? The Reds are intentionally playing with a smaller roster than every opponent they play. Masset has been out for over a week, and they’re waiting until they get home to bring up a pitcher (looks like it will be Pedro Viola)? Frankly, if it weren’t for the 16-inning game that taxed the ‘pen, Jocketty would probably not have felt like he needed to make a move.
Jocketty did the same thing with Gonzo; instead of placing him on the DL, they just played without a full team for a while. I’m worried that the same thing will happen with Votto, with the Reds taking a week to figure out what’s wrong with him and the Reds being short-handed in the meantime.
The Reds are already playing with a 24-man roster, since Darnell McDonald doesn’t help the team in any way. Why does Walt Jocketty insist on compounding that problem with his inaction?
This would be a good start: DL Masset, move Bill Bray off the 40-man roster and place him on the 60-day DL, call up Pedro Viola. Then designate McDonald for assignment and bring up Jonny Gomes to platoon with Laynce Nix in left field. If it turns out that Votto needs time to recover from whatever he has, that’s yet another reason to have Gomes on the roster (as he played 1B in spring training).
Whatever he does, Jocketty needs to make a move. His fear of making a move has kept McDonald on this roster for five weeks longer than he should have been. It’s time for Jocketty to try putting together the best roster for the Reds, something he has yet to do in 2009. Novel idea, huh?