A hamstring injury has kept outfielder Shogo Akiyama out of the lineup, both in spring training and the regular season, for the last three weeks. Working his way back, Akiyama is currently rehabbing with the Cincinnati Reds alternate site team in Louisville. He’s not close to being ready to play in games there, yet, but he’s getting on-field work in a little bit and that environment may be better suited than in Cincinnati where there’s a more rigid situation with preparation on a daily basis for games to prepare for. Manager David Bell spoke about the potential timeline for games in Louisville for Akiyama, and when he could possibly return to Cincinnati.
“Towards the end of the month is the hope,” said Bell of when he could begin playing in rehab games. “Everything’s kind of on track. No date set for when he’ll be back here, but he’s definitely progressing well. I hope, kind of reading between the lines, is that we’ll have him back some time early-to-mid May here. He would need a bit of a ‘spring training’ before that happens. Hopefully by the end of the month he’ll be playing games.”
So far it’s only been six games missed this season for Shogo Akiyama. The Reds haven’t missed him much at this point with Tyler Naquin playing the part of Babe Ruth in his absence so far. But getting Akiyama back will help out Cincinnati, bringing some on-base and defense to the team.
The first Reds Taxi Squad of the year
At least for now there is still going to be a taxi squad that goes on the road when teams in Major League Baseball travel. The Cincinnati Reds just finished up a 5-1 home stand against the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates. Starting on Friday they are traveling out west, first to take on Arizona and then they’ll head to San Francisco to take on the Giants. Here’s the 5-man Taxi Squad that will be with the Reds on the trip out west:
- Heath Hembree – RHP
- Art Warren – RHP
- Beau Taylor – C
- Max Schrock – IF
- Mark Payton – OF
Everyone digs the long ball
For as much as some people want to bring up that a team shouldn’t rely on the home run to score runs, those same people jump out of their seats when their favorite team’s player hits one. Home runs are great. It’s a guaranteed run (or more). And through the first week of the Major League Baseball season no one has more of them than the Cincinnati Reds. The team has an OPS over 1.000, so they’ve been doing hitting of all kinds. But their 14 homers stand out, too – it’s the most in the league. The combination of Nick Castellanos and Tyler Naquin have out-homered 18 teams.
The longest home run came off of the bat of Tyler Naquin on Tuesday when he hit one 454 feet that bounced once on the concourse and then out of the stadium. The homer by Eugenio Suárez on Opening Day against the Cardinals is the shortest – coming in at 346 feet.