Not a whole lot happened at the ol’ ballyard today, but it was hauntingly familiar to those of us that watched the 2014 vintage of Cincinnati Reds baseball. The Reds lost to Cubs 2 -1 if you want to review it (box).
Pitching: Cueto wasn’t his normal self because he struggled with his command, leading to multiple full counts and three walks. He pitched well overall, but one of his walks came right in front of the only hit he gave up (the only Cubs hit of the day), which happened to be a deep homerun cranked by ex-Red Chris Denorfia. The one run over four innings brought his spring ERA to an even 3.00. None of the other Reds pitchers are of particular interest to me (Gregg, Dennick, Contreras, Moscot), but they did well, giving up no runs, no hits, no walks, with four Ks.
“Offense”: Neither Joey Votto nor Jay Bruce was in the lineup, and the Reds offense scattered a few hits and no runs over the first eight innings. Devin Mesoraco had a hit and walk, which was the highlight. Hamilton was 0-fer in the leadoff spot, and Schumaker and Cozart followed suit from the bottom of the order. It was all eerily familiar. Cueto pitching well but unable to make a single mistake because of the punchless Reds offense.
Baserunning: This almost isn’t even worth mentioning since it’s just a random spring training game, but the icing on the cake came in the 9th inning. A single, a wild pitch, and a ground rule double had the Reds back in the game at 2 – 1, with a runner on second and one out. A single by Boesch would have made it first and third with one out, with a decent chance at tying the game, but the Reds sent the runner on a shallow bloop single and got him gunned at the plate. It all just added up to a day we’ve seen too many times before.
Hopefully Votto (who’s only played in 2 of the last 6 games) will be back soon, and the Reds can at least make their spring training losses not look so much like all of their losses from last season.