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Tag:Ramon hErnandez
Posted on: March 13, 2011 6:27 pm
 

Reds enjoying catching surplus

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Ryan HaniganThe Reds have two of the top catching prospects in the game, but also want to keep current catcher Ryan Hanigan around, as the team agreed to a three-year, $4 million extension, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney.

Reds general manager Walt Jocketty wouldn't confirm the deal when reached by the Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay, but Jocketty doesn't usually confirm deals until they are official. Jocketty told Fay the two sides were "close." Olney writes Hanigan can make up to $800,000 more based on playing time.

Hanigan, 30, hit .300/.405/.429 last season and has a career .379 on-base percentage. He is also an excellent defensive catcher. He is scheduled to be arbitration-eligible after the season. Jocketty has shown a propensity to buy out arbitration years. This offseason, the Reds bought out the arbitration years of Joey Votto, Jay Bruce and Johnny Cueto. They tried to do the same with Edinson Volquez.

Cincinnati has Devin Mesoraco and Yasmani Grandal in the minors waiting their turn. Mesoraco was the team's minor league player of the year in 2010 and Grandal was the team's first-round pick in last year's draft. Both are 22.

Hanigan and Ramon Hernandez are the Reds' current catchers and Jocketty said several teams have asked about Cincinnati's catchers. The team also has a solid veteran at Triple-A in Corky Miller.

"We've said no," Jocketty told the Enquirer. "We don't want to give up our surplus."

Hernandez is signed to a one-year deal worth $3 million.

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Posted on: March 7, 2011 2:29 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 11:35 am
 

Miller gives perspective

Corky MillerBy C. Trent Rosecrans
One of my favorite players I've covered is Reds catcher Corky Miller. Miller turns 35 later this month and is still kicking around because he knows he'll have a job, even if it's in Triple-A. He's a solid backup catcher and even more solid person. John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer passes along this tidbit:
So when he heard some players complaining about signing autographs, he dropped the best line of the spring: “If you don’t like it, play worse.”

Fay notes Reds media relations director Rob Butcher is planning on framing a picture of Miller (and his magnificent mustache) with the quote. It certainly should put it in perspective for many players.

Miller signed a minor-league deal with the Reds this offseason, despite knowing the team has Ramon Hernandez and Ryan Hanigan at the major-league level. Plus, Cincy has two top prospects, Devin Mesoraco and Yasmani Grandal, who are catchers and coming up the system fast. Of course, that's one of the big reasons the Reds wanted Miller back.

Miller's played in 199 games in the big leagues over the last 10 years for the Reds, Braves, Twins, Red Sox and White Sox. He's logged 852 minor-league games since being signed as an amateur free agent out of Nevada-Reno by the Reds in 1998.

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Posted on: March 3, 2011 9:54 am
Edited on: March 3, 2011 12:30 pm
 

Pepper: Perez's last chance?

Posted by C. Trent Rosecrans
Oliver Perez

For most established big leaguers, it's beyond idiotic to put much stock in many spring training results -- nobody's a star or scrub based solely on a game in the first week of March -- but Oliver Perez isn't the typical case.

The Mets pitcher has been hanging on to his roster spot by a three-year, $36-million thread for a while. In the last year of his ridiculous contract, the left-hander may be released if he "does not show significant improvement over Sunday's two-inning, four-run disappointment" today against the Cardinals, the New York Daily News' Andy Martino writes, citing two "major league sources familiar with the Mets' thinking."

Sunday, Perez was throwing an 84 mph fastball and struggled with his command. He was initially slated as a reliever for today's game, but he will instead start.

Manager Terry Collins said, "I'm quite sure he'll have another try after [Thursday]." But Martino says that may not be the case.

Since signing his big deal (any guess who his agent is?), Perez has gone 3-9 with a 6.81 ERA in 31 games. He made 14 starts in 2009 and seven last season before being put in the bullpen. He didn't pitch at all in June, and pitched just two games in August -- on the first day of the month and the next-to-last day of the month, and just one day in September.

There was talk the Mets would release him after the season, but they gave him one last try -- and that very last try could come today.

SPEAKING OF ALBATROSS CONTRACTS: Bruce Bochy told reporters Wednesday that Barry Zito's spot in the Giants' rotation is secure, despite a San Francisco Chronicle column citing a "source close to the team" as saying his job isn't safe.

General manager Brian Sabean also denied the story was a plant.

"Absolutely, unequivocally not," Sabean told Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News. "We have too much respect for players, and more so, I have a great relationship with Barry Zito. If things had gotten to that point, I would have talked to him directly, firsthand."

Zito walked five of the 13 batters he faced in his spring opener on Monday.

A.J. Burnett DOESN'T SUCK? So says, FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal.

In fact, Rosenthal points out the much-maligned Yankees' career numbers are pretty darn close to those of Boston's Josh Beckett, another former Marlin. The numbers Rosenthal uses are indeed close -- Burnett is 110-100 with a 3.99 ERA and an opponents' OPS of .701 in his career, while Beckett is 112-74, with a 3.96 ERA and .708 opponents' OPS.

The secret for Burnett to be successful, Rosenthal writes, is for Burnett to believe he can be successful. The Yankees certainly hope that's true.

WHO ISN'T? Speaking of disappointing Red Sox pitchers… John Lackey is "just tired" of talking about his 2010 season, he tells WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.

If I got $18 million to put up a 4.40 ERA. In his first season since coming over from the Angels, Lackey made 33 starts and put up a 14-11 record.

IT'S THE MONEY, STUPID: It's going to be difficult for either Dustin Ackley or Michael Pineda break camp with the Mariners, even if they earn a spot in spring, Larry Stone of the Seattle Times writes, because of the possible Super 2 status.

The Mariners may have to guess when to bring up their talented rookies in hope of not allowing them to reach arbitration eligibility early. To be safe, now most teams wait until June to bring up a heralded prospect. Remember Buster Posey? He was called up to stay last year on May 29.

Recently teams have guessed on when the Super 2 cutoff date would occur and lost on Tim Lincecum (2007) and Jay Bruce (2008) falling before the cutoff date. Teams worried about payroll, like the Mariners, are unlikely to take a gamble.

Ramon HernandezCITIZEN CATCHER: Congratulations to Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez, who took a couple of days off from Cincinnati's camp to go to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to take his United State citizenship test. Hernandez passed the test on Tuesday and will be sworn in at a later date.

"I already live here and I have my life here," Hernandez, a native of Venezuela, told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com. "My kids are U.S. citizens and my wife is a U.S. citizen. I'm the only one left. I feel like I've got to do it because I live here."

Hernandez celebrated with a double against the White Sox on Wednesday.

A PITCHER'S BEST FRIEND: A physicist writes an article on Baseball Prospectus stating that if the Diamondbacks used a humidor at Chase Field, they'd see a 37 percent drop in home runs. (Hat tip to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic)

THOSE AREN'T PILLOWS: The Planes, Trains and Automobiles worthy story of Mike Napoli's journey from the Angels to the Blue Jays to the Rangers from the Orange County Register's Bill Plunkett

SOMEONE IS INTERESTED IN THE METS: A group that includes Rays minority owner Randy Frankel and Entourage creator Doug Ellin, is interested in buying a share of the Mets, the New York Times reports.

Frankel would have to sell his share of the Rays, if approved.

THE DOCTOR IS AN IN-PATIENT: While the NFL seems to have someone on every Dancing With the Stars incarnation, MLB will be represented on Celebrity Rehab by former Mets ace Dwight Gooden.

Gooden, 46, will join Lindsay Lohan's dad and the kid from Baywatch on Dr. Drew's show, TMZ.com reports.

MMMM… GRAVY: A flow chart telling you which Major League Baseball team you should root for.

ANIMAL STYLE: For those non-Californians heading out to spring training in Arizona, here's a little help when it comes to the culinary hotspot that is In-N-Out. You've heard of the secret menu? Here's a look at every "secret" item on the menu.

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Posted on: November 15, 2010 7:04 pm
Edited on: November 15, 2010 7:22 pm
 

Reds resign Hernandez to one-year deal

Hernandez The Reds have resigned catcher Ramon Hernandez to a one-year deal worth $3 million.

It will be Hernandez' third year with the Reds after coming over from the Orioles, and has received 331 and 352 plate appearances, respectively, the last two years. He struggled with injuries in 2009, finishing with a .258/.336/.362 mark and undergoing surgery on his right knee.

"We wanted to provide our young pitching staff with some continuity," GM Walt Jocketty said. "We felt all of our pitchers were comfortable pitching to Ramon. We also like his production at the plate. Our catchers were very solid last year offensively."

In 2010, he bounced back in a more traditional platoon with Ryan Hanigan for playing time and appeared in 97 games, hitting .297/.364/.428 with seven home runs.

The righty will turn 35 shortly after the regular season begins and can't be counted on for a full season behind the dish, so will likely split time again with Hanigan, who had a successful year and could earn the bulk of playing time.

-- Evan Brunell

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Category: MLB
Posted on: October 19, 2010 9:58 am
 

Cincinnati has host of decisions to make

Ramon Hernandez Decisions, decisions.

After the Reds finally got back to the playoffs for the first time since 1995, they now have to decide who will return in 2011 for another shot at October.

Ramon Hernandez (pictured) and Jonny Gomes stand a good chance of returning to town, while GM Walt Jocketty wouldn' rule out Orlando Cabrera's return.

"We're not sure. We'll probably know something later this week," Jocketty said of Cabrera to MLB.com , who has a $4-million club option likely to be declined by the club. While O-Cab had a rough season at the plate with a .263/.303/.354 line in 537 plate appearances, he contributed enough on leadership and defense that the Reds would likely be interested in Cabrera platooning with Paul Janish at short next season.

If Cabrera returns, he may be joined by catcher Ramon Hernandez, who could return to pair with Ryan Hanigan again next season. While Hernandez' $3.25-million vesting option didn't trigger due to starting just 97 games -- well short of the 120-game barrier -- Hernandez was effective when he was on the field. He hit .297/.364/.428 with seven home runs in 352 PA.

"He's a guy we have interest in having back," Jocketty said. While Hernandez is 34, he's shown he still has plenty of life in his bat, but figures to test free agency first.

That's also likely for left fielder Jonny Gomes, who has  $1.75-million club option for 2011 that looks likely to be exercised. He played in a career-high 148 games and drove in 86 runs while batting .266/.327/.431 with 18 home runs. However, the 29-year-old has all of his value tied up in playing against left-handers. If he does come back, he figures to return to his platoon role as Cincinnati should look at bringing in a complement to Gomes. (Could Jocketty be interested in a reunion with Rick Ankiel?)

-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: September 28, 2010 11:34 pm
Edited on: September 29, 2010 1:18 am
 

Bruce delivers walk-off clincher

Jay Bruce CINCINNATI -- I've done it, you've done it. Your team is tied in the ninth and a title is on the line -- everyone dreams of the home run.

Jay Bruce didn't. Or at least he said he hadn't. Until he did it.

On the first pitch he saw from left-hander Tim Byrdak in the ninth inning of a tie game on Tuesday, Bruce hit a solo homer, giving the Cincinnati Reds a 3-2 victory, the National League Central title and their first playoff appearance since 1995.

"I've never even dreamt about this, this is unbelievable," Bruce said.

Bruce entered the at-bat 0 for 3 on the game and 1 for 20 against Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez. It was odd to even see Bruce's name in the lineup against Rodriguez, yet he said he and manager Dusty Baker had talked about it. Baker had faith in the young outfielder.

Bruce did have two hits in six career at-bats against Byrdak, including a homer, so it wasn't too much a stretch to leave him in. He's also improved his average to .260 against lefties this season coming into the game, bettering his career mark of .222.

"I've made big strides against left-handers this year, but I'm not done yet," Bruce said. "I've had ups and downs as a player and this isn't going to be what I am as a player. I expect much better out of myself, but this is only the beginning."

Bruce was called up two years ago to great expectations and has shown flashes of fulfilling his promise as the game's top prospect, but struggled with consistency. Even so, at the age of 23, he already has 65 career home runs -- and none bigger than his 65th.

Bruce knew it immediately -- reliever Nick Masset said he knew before that, calling the shot before the top of the ninth started. In the dugout, starter Homer Bailey said everyone knew the team would win Tuesday to clinch the division, it was just a matter of when. Bruce had barely dropped his bat when he raised his right arm -- "I had a pretty good feeling. Who knows what would have happened had it not gone out," Bruce said.

On deck, Ramon Hernandez was not so sure, he knew Bruce hit it hard, but he worried that he hit it to the exact wrong part of the park -- center field. "I was blowing it out," Hernandez said.

He hadn't need to waste the effort, the breath -- the ball bounced off the batter's eye and Bruce raced around the bases.

"I saw all my guys I'd been working so hard with every single day of the year. I wouldn't be here without my guys," Bruce said afterwards on the field after taking a victory lap with his teammates.

Bruce said he wasn't trying to end the game, he just wanted to hit the ball hard -- get on base and let someone knock him in. Instead, he did it all himself.

"It was unbelievable," Bruce said. "This is the perfect description. Unbelievable ."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 10, 2010 11:33 pm
Edited on: August 11, 2010 12:49 am
 

Cardinals accuse Cueto of hurting 2 players

Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said backup catcher Jason LaRue suffered a concussion in Tuesday's fracas in Cincinnati.

La Russa said LaRue suffered the concussion at the feet of Reds starter Johnny Cueto, who kicked outward when he was backed up to the backstop during the near-brawl.

"I've got Cueto kicking me in the back. It's super unprofessional. I don't know where he learned how to fight," Cardinals pitcher said Chris Carpenter, who claimed he ended up with scratches on his back.

Cueto said he was just trying to escape after being pinned against the wall.

"When 15 people get over you, you get scared," he said after the game, using catcher Ramon Hernandez as a translator. "I did get nervous, a lot. I put my feet up, trying to get out of the way. I was trying to get up. My back was against the wall and I was trying to get people out of the way so I could get up."

Cueto can expect a suspension as soon as Wednesday for his role in the fracas.

Carpenter said he didn't have a problem with former teammate Scott Rolen, who grabbed him and drove him to the backstop.

"It was fine. I think Scott grabbed me and they thought we were doing something. That's when the bullrush got me. Scott was pulling me out and I was fine with that," Carpenter said. "I didn't know what happened, I felt someone grab me. Next thing you know I'm laying on the net getting kicked."

When a Reds radio network reporter said to Rolen that it looked like he was trying to serve as a peacemaker, Rolen paused and said, "That's a very friendly way of putting it. It's a very nice thing to say."

Of course, this all started Monday when Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips called the Cardinals "little bitches."

Phillips, the Reds leadoff hitter, always taps the shin guards of the opposing catcher and umpire with his bat before the game. Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina took issue with the gesture.

"The comment he made last night ... that's going to happen. If you think I'm going to be in a good mood about the comment you made last night, don't say hi to me," Molina said.

Molina then said something to Phillips, kept him from getting into the batter's box and Phillips started jawing back. Then the benches emptied, with managers Dusty Baker and Tony La Russa getting into a shouting match.

"One thing led to another and guys were chirping and some guys said be quiet and then one of their coaches told our guys to be quiet," Baker said. "I told him to be quiet and Tony told me not to talk to his coaches."

After the managers were pulled apart, the second wave went on behind them with Rolen, Carpenter and Cueto caught up in it.

No players were ejected, only the two managers.

Molina then backed up his words, hitting a home run in the second and imitating Phillips' home run trot.

Molina finished 2 for 3 with two RBI, while Phillips was 1 for 5 with an RBI and made the last out in a Reds' loss for the second consecutive night.

Afterward, Phillips didn't have much to say.

"We just lost today. Regardless of what happened, it's all about wins and losses and we got an L today," he said.

With the 8-4 win, the Cardinals take over the lead in the National League Central by percentage points over the Reds.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.






Posted on: July 5, 2010 6:56 pm
Edited on: July 5, 2010 11:37 pm
 

Reds' Hernandez out with knee injury


Ramon Hernandez For most of the season, the National League Central-leading Cincinnati Reds have been lucky not to have an injury that's drastically altered their plans from the beginning of the season.

Only two regulars -- starter Homer Bailey and catcher Ryan Hanigan -- have been on the disabled list.

While not on the DL, the team's other catcher from the opening day roster is hurting. Ramon Hernandez hurt his knee in Sunday's victory over the Cubs and left the game. Corky Miller is starting for the Reds.

"He's got swelling in there that he didn't have yesterday," Reds manager Dusty Baker told the Cincinnati Enquirer 's John Fay. "He's a little sore. Hopefully he'll be better tomorrow. He'll get treatment all day in case I've got to pinch-run or pinch-hit for Corky late in this game."

Baker said he didn't know if Hernandez could catch in a pinch if needed tonight.

Hanigan, on the disabled list since May 29 with a broken thumb, is currently on a rehab assignment at Triple-A Louisville. Hanigan was hitting .200/.300/.229 in 10 games and 35 at-bats for the Bats, catching the last five games. He's also catching for the Bats in Monday's game in Indianapolis.

Hernandez missed 57 games last season with a left knee injury and had arthroscopic surgery in July, coming back for the last two weeks of the season.

When Hanigan went on the DL, he'd taken over the primary catching job from Hernandez. But over the last month, Miller's started 10 games with Hernandez starting the rest. Last season, his troubles started when he played first base in Joey Votto's absence.

Hernandez is hitting .287/.365/.403 with three home runs and 23 RBI for the Reds.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


 
 
 
 
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