New Reds manager Bryan Price and GM Walt Jocketty are faced with the unexpected and challenging task of finding twenty-five healthy players to take north to Cincinnati for Opening Day. It looks like six players assumed to be on that roster will instead begin the season on the disabled list.
Jonathan BroxtonÃ‚Â Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Recovering from August surgery to repair a torn flexor mass tendon in his right forearm. He has pitched in two spring training games. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I still have to get where I can throw my fastball,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Broxton. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I felt fine. I am just everywhere right now.Ã¢â‚¬Â (Mark Sheldon) Ã¢â‚¬Å“He wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t be ready for the season. He and Marshall have to be ready to do what the other guys are doing, which is to throw back-to-back games and have the durability to throw on a regular basis, simply because the starters arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t going to be asked to throw 115-120 pitches in the early part of the season,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. (C. Trent Rosecrans)
Aroldis Chapman Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Multiple facial fractures suffered when hit by a line drive. Could begin working out in 10-14 days and may be ready to pitch in game conditions in four to six weeks. Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s certainly better than expected,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. Ã¢â‚¬Å“WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re happy that our doctors are so optimistic the surgery went well and he should be back on the field relatively quickly considering.Ã¢â‚¬Â (Mark Sheldon) ” A fairly long list of players have suffered similar injuries, although it sounds like Chapman fortunately may be at the less-serious end of the spectrum.
Mat Latos Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Recovering from left knee surgery that repaired torn meniscus cartilage. Will make his second spring start in a Minor League game on Monday. (Mark Sheldon) Ã¢â‚¬Å“The thing we want to do with Mat is insure that he is given every opportunity to be ready once he gets that first Major League starting assignment. I think weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re doing our due diligence that he gets at least five starts here before we activate him,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. (C Trent Rosecrans)
Alfredo Simon, who served in this role before with Baltimore, will likely start the season in the Reds rotation. Pitcher Brett Marshall, claimed off waivers just before spring training, is another player well positioned to make the Opening Day roster. Not only has Marshall pitched well this spring, but he’s also on the 40-man roster. Marshall pitched twelve innings for the Yankees in 2013.
Jack HannahanÃ‚Â Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Recovering from off-season labrum (shoulder) surgery.
Neftali SotoÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s strong spring has put him in a position to take HannahanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s roster spot to begin the season. Soto has been working out at 3B, 1B and as the emergency catcher. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Nefi has done everything he needs to do to be a legitimate emergency guy if he makes this roster. It frees up the second catcher to be more of an offensive bench tool,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. Ã¢â‚¬Å“IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d love to get him in a Cactus League game, I just havenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t had the opportunity yet.Ã¢â‚¬Â (C Trent Rosecrans)
Sean Marshall Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Sore shoulder. Has thrown two successful bullpen sessions. Ã¢â‚¬Å“HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s been feeling great,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the most optimistic I know IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been in regards to Sean and his shoulder issues dating back to this time last year.Ã¢â‚¬Â (Mark Sheldon)
Skip SchumakerÃ‚Â Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Dislocated left shoulder diving for a ball. Could miss four weeks. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Hopefully I will rehab it and be out a month or so, maybe less, and go from there. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a pretty clean dislocation. The MRI was a positive thing. It wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t like the Ludwick situation, which was my fear,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Schumaker. (Mark Sheldon)
OF Roger Bernadina will likely make the club. He’s had a hot spring and can take Schumaker’s place as a backup in the outfield.
Other players are battling injuries:
Devin Mesoraco Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Strained left oblique muscle Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Ã¢â‚¬Å“It was just real minior and I just took a second. I kept trying to swing and kept going and it didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t bother me at all. I came in and sat down and cooled down and went back out. I could just tell it wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t right. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re going to start working on it a little bit just to see where IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m at here today and tomorrow,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Mesoraco. (Mark Sheldon) Ã¢â‚¬Å“Typically the response to that is 48 hours of inactivity and reassess. We donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t feel at this point itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a significant issue, however when you talk about the oblique, it always can be a concern. Today and tomorrow are big days in order to be able to assess the severity,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Mesoraco. (C Trent Rosecrans)
Homer Bailey Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Strained right groin Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Threw 25 pitches Friday morning in a bullpen session. Scheduled to pitch today in a Minor League game. Ã¢â‚¬Å“If everything goes good Sunday, which it should, I should stay on track to make my first start of the season,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bailey. (Mark Sheldon). Ã¢â‚¬Å“Every day it has improved a little bit. Even the next day I was able to throw. Just not able to get after. Even today throwing, my arm feels great.Ã¢â‚¬Â (C Trent Rosecrans) Ã¢â‚¬Å“If he can pitch on Sunday, he could come back and pitch on Friday (in Pensacola) and then heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s lined up for the season. He should be able to get his innings and number of pitches ready to go. I think todayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s bullpen and ability to pitch on Sunday is pretty important,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. [Update: Bailey’s minor-league start was pushed back to tomorrow. That throws him off schedule to pitch the second game of the season.]
That schedule would put BaileyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s first regular season start on Opening Night, Wednesday, April 2, against the Cardinals. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s definitely available to be the Opening Day pitcher.
Johnny Cueto Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Sore shoulder muscle. Will start a Minor League game on Tuesday. Ã¢â‚¬Å“(The concern level is) minor, very minor. He could have pitched yesterday, but we felt being proactive, it was best not to exasperate the issue. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s something he could pitch with, but itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d be a nagging issue,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Bryan Price. (C Trent Rosecrans)
Mike Leake (abdominal muscle) and Tony Cingrani (dead arm) seem to be on schedule to start the season.