The Reds play the Chicago White Sox today at Goodyear Park. First pitch at 4:05 p.m. ET and broadcast by WSAI 1360 out of Cincinnati.

Shin-Soo Choo continues to sit out after suffering back spasms on Friday. C. Trent Rosecrans has Choo saying: “There’s no reason to push it right now,” Choo said. “It’s spring training. If it were the regular season, I wouldn’t be missing games right now, I’d be playing. But right now, there’s no reason to take any chances.” Not much to worry about right now, but I’m raising the DEFCON panic level from 5 to 4. Derrick Robinson, a switch hitter, is leading off today presumably because he’s playing CF. Maybe he’ll cause some havoc on the base paths.

Chris Heisey is batting fourth because he’s playing left field. Brandon Phillips returns from the WBC and bats second. JoeyMVP is back in the lineup after skipping last night’s away game, along with regulars Jay Bruce and Super Todd Frazier. Emmanuel Burris, who seems to be behind both Jason Donald and Cesar Izturis in the competition for the utility IF roster spot, starts at shortstop for Zack Cozart. Devin Mesoraco (.435/.480/.826) catches Homer Bailey. Looks like Dusty Baker is putting that band back together.

Here is the lineup:

  1. Robinson 8
  2. Phillips 4
  3. Votto 3
  4. Heisey 7
  5. Bruce 9
  6. Frazier 5
  7. Burriss 6
  8. Mesoraco 2
  9. Bailey 1

Homer takes the mound for the fifth time. He’s thrown 9 innings in games so far. Spring training stats are pretty meaningless unless I want to make a point using one, but for pitchers, you can get a rough indication how they’re doing by looking at strikeouts and walks. Homer has 8 of the good and only one of the bad. He also killed an African lion with a bow and arrow.

UPDATE: Mark Sheldon is reporting that the Reds have assigned Billy Hamilton and pitcher Drew Hayes to the minor league camp.