Tag:Travis Wood
Posted on: October 2, 2010 2:58 pm
Edited on: October 2, 2010 9:12 pm

Could be sad end for Harang in Cincy

Aaron Harang
The Reds are finally headed for the playoffs, but the man who's been in a Cincinnati uniform the longest might not be part of the picture.

Aaron Harang has been with the Reds since 2003 and has been the Opening Day starter the past five years. He's active in the community and well-liked by teammates and fans alike. But designating a playoff roster is cutthroat business, and it looks like there might be no room for the 32-year-old.

"I haven't heard anything," Harang told MLB.com. "There's nothing I can really do about it. It's up to Dusty [Baker], Bryan Price and Walt Jocketty to figure out the best possible players to take. ... Of course I want to be in there, and be on the field participating and helping out."

Harang made 19 starts this season, but lost his rotation spot in early September and has appeared just twice in relief since. He suffered a bruise when he took a line drive off his ankle in his last appearance September 22, but says he's fine to play.

His 6-7 record and 5.25 ERA, however, don't seem to make him a good candidate for the Reds' postseason roster, which will probably carry 11 pitchers. For the rotation, the Reds haven't announced who they'll take -- they have to choose from among Bronson Arroyo, Edinson Volquez, Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey and Travis Wood.

Not only is this likely the end of Harang's season, it's also probably the end of his time with the Reds. He has a $12.75 million club option for 2011 that won't be picked up, and the Reds are flush with other pitching options going forward.

Harang deserves better, but baseball is a business, and Reds have to give themselves the best possible chance to win.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: September 17, 2010 1:30 am
Edited on: September 17, 2010 11:27 am

Reds rookies get dressed up

As I've mentioned before, I'm a sucker for the rookie road trip .

Thursday, it was the Reds' rookies that got to dress up for their trip to Houston, and Reds blogger/assistant media relations director Jamie Ramsey has the photos .

What's more, two local Cincinnati TV stations have video of the rookies getting ready. Here's Fox 19 and WLWT .

That's Jordan Smith in the police woman costume, Yonder Alonso as the baby, Chris Valaika as Mrs. Claus, Travis Wood as the female Robin, Mike Leake in baby blue, Logan Ondrusek with the bright pink wig, Chris Heisey in a corset and Sam LeCure as a purple showgirl.

On Twitter , LeCure said, "I enjoy that stuff, it's an honor."

And it really is -- it's a time when the veterans can see what a rookie is made of -- if he makes the best of it, he's a good guy. If he sulks and tries to get out of it, his teammates won't forget it.

UPDATE: Add FSOhio to the list with video of the rookie fun.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: September 4, 2010 7:25 pm
Edited on: September 4, 2010 7:26 pm

Reds not shutting Leake down

Reds rookie starter Mike Leake will begin throwing again on Monday, MLB.com's Mark Sheldon reports .

Leake, the Reds' first-round pick in 2009, skipped the minor leagues entirely, making the Reds' rotation out of spring training.

Mike Leake There had been conjecture that the team would shut him down after he threw 138 1/3 innings, just shy of the number he threw last season at Arizona State in 2009.

The Reds placed him on the disabled list last week with what they called "right shoulder fatigue."

"The progressions will be fairly aggressive," Reds pitching coach Bryan Price said. "It's not like he's going back to his first day of catch back in December. He'll go back and start doing his long-toss routine. As long as everything continues to progress without any discomfort or fatigue, we'll keep pushing him to get back on the mound after about a week of long-toss."

Leake can come off the disabled list on Sept. 9 and the team hopes he can still play some role in the last month of the regular season and perhaps the postseason. Leake made two relief appearances after 22 starts and struggled in both of those outings.

Leake is 8-4 with a 4.23 ERA. If he is used in a reliever role, he could also serve as a pinch hitter or pinch runner in a … pinch. Travis Wood has stepped into Leake's spot in the rotation and pitched as well as Leake did earlier this season. The left-handed rookie is 5-2 with a 3.19 ERA after Saturday's win over Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Category: MLB
Posted on: August 29, 2010 3:55 pm

Volquez hits bullpen, Harang to start

Edinson Volquez Edinson Volquez's return from Tommy John surgery hasn't gone as planned as the fireballing righty will be shifted to the bullpen after eight starts of a 6.17 ERA.

"Volky goes to ‘pen for now so he can do some mechanical work on the side with Bryan Price,” said manager Dusty Baker to the Dayton Daily News. “Hopefully, he can get everything back together. Velocity is there, everything is there, but he is working on command and most of that is mechanical."

The 2008 All-Star gave up just one earned run in his season debut on July 17, tossing six innings. He struggled through two abbreviated starts thereafter but seemed to be coming out of it with three consecutive one-run games that has been marred by two consecutive five-run outings, the last coming in just 2/3s of an inning.

"My arm and whole body feels fine," Volquez said. "It is just a matter of finding my release point and being more consistent in the strike zone. I’ll work with [pitching coach Bryan Price] in the bullpen and they told me if things work out they’ll put me back in the rotation in September."

Most pitchers who undergo Tommy John typically need an extended stint on the mound to really get their effectiveness back. Even as pitchers make it back to a big-league roster within 10-12 months, it oftentimes takes longer -- something Ryan Dempster told Volquez.

"He told me, ‘Don’t worry about what you’re going through right now because I went through the same thing when I came back.’ He said I’ll feel really, really good next year -- that I have to wait until next year," Volquez added.

To replace the 27-year-old in the rotation, Travis Wood is moving up a day to start Sunday. Taking Wood's place Tuesday against the Brewers will be Aaron Harang, returning from lower back spasms . How Harang and Volquez pitch for the remainder of the year will dictate who makes the postseason rotation.

Even though the Reds have plenty of rotation candidates, the NL Central Division-leading squad is struggling with late-season breakdowns. Harang is hobbled by an injury and hasn't been the same since 2008 , Volquez is now in the bullpen and rookie Mike Leake has been shut down, although Leake could return in late September. The Reds have Wood's innings total to worry about as well.

That leaves Johnny Cueto and Bronson Arroyo atop the rotation along with Homer Bailey -- fresh off his own DL stint as well -- as they cling to a four-game lead over the Cardinals entering play Sunday.

-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: August 25, 2010 2:45 am
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Posted on: August 25, 2010 2:41 am
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Posted on: August 25, 2010 2:38 am

Reds may shut down Leake

Mike Leake was one of the good stories of the early season for the Cincinnati Reds, but after being moved to the bullpen in hopes of limiting his innings, the team is now considering shutting him down for the season.

"We're addressing it now," Reds manager Dusty Baker told the Cincinnati Enquirer 's John Fay following Tuesday's 16-5 loss to the Giants. "It seemed like he was getting hurt on his slider. He's rolling it up there. It's not sharp."

Mike Leake Leake made his second relief appearance of the season in the game, allowing six hits and six runs while retiring just a single Giants batter. Leake gave up two home runs, a two-run shot to Juan Uribe and a three-run homer to fellow rookie Buster Posey.

Leake's ERA jumped from 3.85 to 4.23 with the appearance.

Leake was taken out of the rotation following his Aug. 14 start against the Marlins, when he picked up his eighth win of the season. Because he'd thrown 135 2/3 innings at that point, the Reds moved him to the bullpen to protect the 22-year old's arm.

He made his first relief appearance Saturday in Los Angeles, allowing two runs on five hits in 2 1/3 innings.

For the season, he's now thrown 138 1/3 innings.

The Reds' first-round pick in 2009, Leake skipped the minor leagues, making the rotation out of spring training. Leake won his first five decisions, netting a 2.22 ERA in his first 11 starts.

In his next 11 starts, he went 3-4 with a 5.60 ERA.

Leake threw 142 innings at Arizona State, plus 19 2/3 innings in the Arizona Fall League.

When rosters expand in September, the Reds could shut Leake down as a pitcher, but still use him as a pinch-hitter and pinch-runner. As impressive as his stats as a pitcher are for his rookie season (91 strikeouts 51 walks), Leake was even better at the plate. In 58 plate appearances, Leake hit .348/.423/.370 with three RBI and six sacrifices.

Fellow rookie Travis Wood was battered about by the Giants, allowing seven runs on seven hits in four innings. The team has Aaron Harang close to returning from a rehab assignment, although the team had been considering using him out of the bullpen. Left-hander Matt Maloney is currently in Triple-A, but is 0-2 with a 3.09 ERA in two starts for Cincinnati this season.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .
Posted on: August 9, 2010 11:48 pm
Edited on: August 10, 2010 1:02 pm

Reds may remove Leake from rotation

Mike Leake UPDATE, 8/10, 1 p.m. : Homer Bailey has been scratched from his Triple-A start on Tuesday and will pitch in relief instead, lining him up to take Leake's spot in the rotation Friday, reports the Cincinatti Enquirer . -- Evan Brunell

Early in the season Mike Leake was one of the great stories in baseball -- a kid who skipped the minor leagues entirely and came into the big leagues dealing.

In his first 11 starts, Leake was 5-0 with a 2.22 ERA.

Now in his last 10, he's 2-4 with a 5.72 ERA, including the shortest outing of his short career on Monday, going 3 2/3 innings and allowing six earned runs and seven total runs against the Cardinals. It was the second consecutive start that's seen him give up seven runs.

The Reds are now worried the rookie has hit a wall and may take him out of the rotation, John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer writes .

"We discussed it," Baker told reporters after Monday's 7-3 loss. "He had a big inning in Pittsburgh, but [that was] led to by a couple of different things -- a hit batsman and a potential play on the groundball. We've got to discuss it and talk some more.

"I'm sure this will be a topic of discussion, possibly tomorrow."

Before Monday's game, the Reds optioned their other rookie starter, Travis Wood, to Triple-A Louisville. With two off days for the Reds in the next week, Wood wasn't scheduled to start again until Aug. 18 in Arizona, but will now start the next day against the Diamondbacks. (Interestingly enough, Wood and Leake have pretty similar numbers through eight starts -- Wood is 3-1 with a 2.65 ERA and a .238 opponents batting average, 40 strikeouts and 13 walks. Through eight starts, Leake was 4-0 with a 2.91 ERA a .218 batting average against, 39 strikeouts and 21 walks.)

Homer Bailey is likely ready to replace Leake in the rotation if the Reds need him. The 24-year old has made four rehab starts in the minor leagues and is scheduled to make his fourth at Triple-A Louisville on Tuesday. In three starts at Louisville, he's gone 2-0 with a 2.50 ERA, allowing five earned runs in 18 innings, striking out 15 and walking four, while allowing 15 hits. Bailey was on the disabled list with a  shoulder injury. In nine starts this season, Bailey is 1-2 with a 5.51 ERA.

The Reds do have some flexibility with their rotation because of a day off on Thursday, as well as next Monday. They also have a couple of other starters in the minors who have had success in the big leagues this year in Sam LeCure and Matt Maloney.

For his part, Leake has now thrown 129 2/3 innings. He threw 142 at Arizona State last season and the Reds have been skipping his starts on off days to help keep his innings down. For his part, Leake told Fay he felt fine.

"I feel great," Leake said. "I've just hit a rough patch."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com