[This post was submitted by loyal Nation member Joseph Rettig, who attended yesterday’s game against Cleveland at Goodyear. Thanks, Joseph!]
There is a lot of uncertainty within the Cincinnati Reds organization this year. There are a lot of questions that need answered: Who is playing left field, how much does Jose Peraza play, who does the starting rotation and bullpen consist of, will Zack Cozart be able to be as good offensively as he was last year before the injury? The list goes on and on. I may not have completely got any of those questions answered, but I definitely have a better idea of what to expect from the Reds this year after watching them defeat the Indians 7-4 at Goodyear Ballpark.
I had never been to a spring training game and didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t know what to expect. Unfortunately the Reds ball club split the roster today so some of the players were at Camelback Ranch taking on the Chicago White Sox: Brandon Phillips, Devin Mesoraco, and Billy Hamilton. A lot of the main players were in Goodyear however: Jose Peraza, Zack Cozart batting DH, Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, and Eugeino Surarez. After watching this game IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m definitely excited for the season even though I know the Reds have no shot at the postseason.
Tim Melville started for the Reds. I had never heard of him, before today. This past offseason he was signed by the Reds on a minor league contract. He gave up a run early in the first and then settled in for the next few innings, but ended up giving up three home runs. The game was back and forth the whole way. The Indians took the lead in the first then the Reds tied it up in the fourth, took the lead in the fifth, lost the lead in the sixth, and then finally regained the lead for good in the seventh.
There werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t many negatives from a Reds standpoint today. The main things were the home runs that were given up. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s honestly the only thing I can think of. They did hit into a couple double plays but thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s about it. They were actually able to do the things the Reds normally have trouble with: moving runners over, putting a bunt down, the list goes on and on.
The main positives from the game:
- Eugenio Suarez HR in the 4th
- Zack Cozart with a double, 3 RBIs, and a BB
- Blake Traham going 2-4 and having 2 great defensive plays ( I had never heard of him, he was drafted by the Reds in 3rd round of the 2015 draft.
- Tony Cingrani pitching 1.1 innings of no hit baseball (he has long hair now)
Overall the game was great. There were a lot of positives and IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m extremely excited about the year ahead. I would suggest a spring training game to any Reds fan. The Goodyear Ballpark is really nice and really made for an enjoyable Saturday afternoon.
This was one of the main reasons I wanted to go to the game today. I also didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t know to expect in regards to FanFest. I would say it definitely exceeded my expectations. I was disappointed that I was unable to get Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Eugenio Suarez, or Homer BaileyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s autograph. Homer was at the ballpark today too.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m big in to collecting autographs. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been to multiple Reds Caravans, but hadnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t been to a Reds Fest or Reds FanFest. You had to leave the stadium and then come back in. The tickets for the FanFest were $25 and it was a Reds/Indians event. The line to get in wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t long and the lines for autographs werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t long either. They also allowed you to run the bases. I ran them in 18 seconds. You could also throw a few pitches in the bullpen and they had other things set up on the field. The lines for autographs were comparable to the ones at the Reds Caravan, probably even faster. The autographs I got were:
- Tucker Barnhart
- Keyvius Sampson
- Ramon Cabrera
- Jose Peraza
- Brandon Finnegan
- Terry Francona
- Rajai Davis
- Billy Hatcher
- Mario Soto
There were other Cleveland players there that I couldÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got, but I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t know who they were.
I would suggest the FanFest to any Reds fan as well. It was definitely worth the $25. The activities on the field were just as much as fun as getting the autographs.