Tag:Travis Wood
Posted on: August 9, 2010 4:36 pm
Edited on: August 9, 2010 4:57 pm
 

Scoring error drops Leake's ERA a half point


Mike Leake Reds rookie Mike Leake shaved nearly a half of a run off of his ERA before he even threw a pitch on Monday.

Leake, who will start opposite Chris Carpenter in the first game of the showdown between the first-place Reds and second-place Cardinals, benefitted from a scoring change in last Tuesday's start in Pittsburgh.

With an out in the second inning, Lastings Milledge hit a grounder by third baseman Scott Rolen that was originally called a double. The Reds appealed and on Monday Major League Baseball changed it to an error. That changed the six earned runs in that inning to six unearned, dropping his ERA from 3.86 to 3.43 on the season. Leake gave up another unearned run in the fifth, on his own error. That was the only game the Reds lost on their six-game road trip.

The Reds' other rookie starter, Travis Wood, was optioned to Triple-A Louisville before the game to make room for Jim Edmonds, acquired by the team earlier in the day. Wood, 3-1 with a 2.65 ERA in eight starts, will likely be back up after 10 days. The Reds have two off days in the next week, Thursday and next Monday. Wood wasn't scheduled to pitch again until the 18th in Arizona, now he'll pitch the next day.
Wood has thrown 149 innings between the minors and majors this season. He threw 167 2/3 innings last season. The team is monitoring Leake's innings as well. He's thrown 126 innings so far this season, his first professional season.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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



Posted on: August 5, 2010 9:06 pm
Edited on: August 5, 2010 9:10 pm
 

Pirates manager likes Cards in NL Central race


John Russell The Pittsburgh Pirates have played back-to-back to the top two teams in the National League Central, getting swept in St. Louis and winning one of three against the Reds in Pittsburgh.

After seeing both teams up close, Pirates manager John Russell says he likes the Cardinals down the stretch. From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 's Rob Biertempfel :
"Because of the experience,” Russell said. “They’ve got a lot of guys who’ve been there and who’ve been through it. They know what to expect. They’ve got two horses in their rotation who’ve been to the playoffs and know what those games are like.”

Russell rated the teams’ bullpens as even. When it comes to bats, he gave Cards sluggers Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday an edge over the Reds’ Joey Votto and Scott Rolen. “Those two (Pujols and Holliday) have consistently shown they can put up great numbers,” Russell said.

Even with Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright anchoring the St. Louis rotation, Russell said Cincy’s group could be the better of the two.

“The five guys they run out there are pretty good,” Russell said. “The potential downfall is the two young guys — (Mike) Leake and (Travis) Wood. As they get close, how those guys react when it’s time to make a push for a playoff spot.
Maybe the best reason to like the Cardinals -- St. Louis has nine games remaining against Russell's Pirates to Cincinnati's three. Six of the remaining games between the Pirates and Cardinals are in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh travels to Cincinnati the second week of September.

The Reds are 8-5 this season against the Pirates and the Cardinals are 5-1.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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



Posted on: July 17, 2010 11:56 pm
Edited on: July 18, 2010 1:31 pm
 

Volquez impressive in return

Less than a year after undergoing Tommy John surgery, Edinson Volquez was on the mound once again Saturday night, throwing 95 with a viscous changeup. In front of a sell-out crowd at Great American Ball Park, Volquez allowed just three hits to the Colorado Rockies and struck out nine in six innings, as the Reds kept pace with the Cardinals thanks to an 8-1 victory.

"Getting Volky back, especially a productive Volquez, is like making a major trade," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "You get a guy back, it'd be hard to find anyone out there better than he was. That was an outstanding performance, and he picked our whole team up. The guys are elated to have him back, you could tell the way they responded."

Edinson Volquez Volquez, an All-Star in 2008, joins a Reds rotation that started slow but has come on strong of late, in part bolstered by rookie Travis Wood. Wood, who was edged out for the fifth starter's spot in spring training by Mike Leake, will make his fourth start on Sunday. Despite not picking up a win in his first three starts, Wood impressed taking a perfect game into the ninth inning against the Phillies last week. In addition to Wood (0-0, 2.18), the Reds rotation consists of the reliable Bronson Arroyo (10-4, 3.95 ERA), a Johnny Cueto who seems to be putting it together (8-2, 3.42) and Leake (6-1, 3.53).

"I think we've got the best pitching staff in baseball," said second baseman Brandon Phillips, who hit a three-run homer in the fourth inning.

That 's likely overstating it more than a little -- but one-through-five, they may have the best starting pitching in the division, and that'll be important down the stretch. The Cardinals may be better with their first three, but St. Louis would welcome the guy Cincinnati sent down on Saturday (Matt Maloney) for one of the other two spots.

And with Volquez back, the team added a potential ace.

"For him to go out and pitch like he did today, there's a lot of teams in trouble," Phillips said.

Volquez's quick return should raise some eyebrows, considering his 50-game suspension for performance-enhancing drugs earlier this season. Volquez has stuck to his story that he used a fertility drug to help him start a family with his wife. However, the drug was similar to the one Manny Ramirez was suspended for using a year ago.

Volquez looked similar to the pitcher that made the 2008 All-Star team, with his fastball sitting around 95 mph and a nasty changeup. The one difference was a newfound confidence in his curveball -- that and more hair. A lot more hair, but the curveball was just as natty as the dreads that added a couple of hat sizes to Volquez's melon.

"The last couple of years I didn't throw my curve, [tonight] I threw it a lot," Volquez said. "I felt more comfortable with it than my changeup. Last night I told [Francisco] Cordero my curve was better than my changeup. I told him I'd show him. Today he said, 'yeah, you're right.'"

Reds catcher Ryan Hanigan said he didn't know how they'd use the curveball, but both he and Volquez noticed early on he had a good feel for it and they used it more and more.

"We didn't throw it that much in rehab starts in Triple-A, but he had such a feel for it and threw it so much, he got some quality strikes and strikeouts on that pitch tonight that was great," Hanigan said. "I wasn't expecting it."

Volquez admitted he was a little too excited in the first inning when Dexter Fowler doubled and Carlos Gonzalez singled him in. He needed 22 pitches that inning and used 55 pitches to get through three innings. However the second and third time through the Rockies' lineup, no batter registered a hit.

"By the third, fourth inning, his stuff was ridiculous," Hanigan said. "He threw all his pitches whenever he wanted to with the action I've seen from him in the past. It's impressive to see a guy like that command all his pitches so well in his first start. When he does that, he's tough."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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





Posted on: July 15, 2010 8:56 pm
 

Reds looking for experienced bullpen help


Russ Springer It turns out right-hander Russ Springer is exactly what the Reds are looking for -- old relievers.

The Reds signed the 41-year old Springer to a minor-league contract and assigned him to Triple-A Louisville.

The Cincinnati Enquirer 's John Fay talked to Reds general manager Walt Jocketty , who said the team is looking mainly for bullpen experience as the July 31 trade deadline looms.

"I think what I'm looking for more than anything is a little more experience in the bullpen and bullpen depth," Jocketty said. "I still like our club the way it is. We've still got some guys coming back with (Edinson) Volquez and we're trying to get (Aroldis) Chapman ready for the bullpen. Chapman is going to help, but he doesn't have the experience."

Chapman was moved to the bullpen last month and hasn't fared well. In seven appearances as a reliever, Chapman has a 5.79 ERA, allowing seven hits, seven runs, seven walks in 9 1/3 innings pitched. He has struck out 14 and batters are hitting just .194 off of him as a reliever, versus .246 as a starter. Chapman was 5-5 with a 4.11 ERA in 13 starts.

As far as the Reds' rotation, Jocketty said Travis Wood and Matt Maloney will not be put in the bullpen and Aaron Harang's return from the disabled list is still unsure.

"He was a little stiff today," Jocketty told Fay. "We'll monitor him the next few days. We would like to get him back pitching. We're not sure how long that's going to be."

If Wood continues to pitch as he has, there will be no real hurry to get Harang back, especially with Volquez's return.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: July 15, 2010 6:33 pm
 

Volquez to start Saturday

Edinson Volquez Less than a year after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, Edinson Volquez will start for the Reds on Saturday.

Volquez, who was suspended 50 games for testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs in April, made four starts for Triple-A Louisville, going 3-0 with a 1.96 ERA. In 23 innings with the Bats, he gave up 11 hits, eight walks and stuck out 21.

Bronson Arroyo is scheduled to start on Friday, but the team hasn't announced the rest of its rotation beyond Arroyo and Volquez. Rookie Mike Leake has already thrown 109 2/3 innings, after throwing 142 innings at Arizona State last season.

With Volquez in, the Reds have to figure out the rest of their rotation, and what to do with Leake.

If Volquez pitches like he has in the minor leagues -- hitting 97 on the radar gun -- and passes drug tests, he helps solidify the rotation, along with Arroyo (9-4, 4.04 ERA) and Johnny Cueto (8-2, 3.42). That leaves the fifth spot that's up in the air between veteran Aaron Harang (6-7, 5.02) and rookie Travis Wood, who has been impressive in his three starts so far, posting a 2.18 ERA and even taking a perfect game into the ninth inning of his last start, Saturday at Philadelphia.

The team is also expected to get the talented, if underperforming, Homer Bailey (1-2, 5.51) back and have also seen two nice starts from left-hander Matt Maloney.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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


Posted on: July 11, 2010 1:41 pm
 

Arroyo won't talk extension

Bronson Arroyo Maybe Bronson Arroyo is a fan of The Who, because he says he won't get fooled again.

Stung by signing a contract with Boston in 2006 only to get traded to the Reds before the season started, the Cincinnati right-hander told the Cincinnati Enquirer he plans to follow through with the option year of his contract in 2011. He won't negotiate an extension that would give him more years but reduce his $11 million salary for next season.

"I’m not going to stay for a discount,” he said. "I’ve done that once. Loyalty in this game is the utmost. I got to look out for me. For what I’ve done the last six years in this game, to sign back for less than what my option is would be insane."

That stance puts the Reds in a tough spot, because it means they have to decide right now whether Arroyo is worth $11 million next year at age 34. The buyout on the option is $2 million.

If they're not willing to commit that money, they need to trade him before the deadline, but they're a first-place team and he's been a valuable starter (9-4, 4.04).

On the other hand, Arroyo could bring a big return on the trade market and, if there's any area the Reds have abundance, it's starting pitching. They have Mike Leake, Johnny Cueto and Travis Wood, with Edinson Volquez, Aaron Harang and Homer Bailey due to return from the disabled list.

-- David Andriesen

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

Posted on: July 5, 2010 7:05 pm
 

Reds' Harang scratched

Aaron Harang Less than an hour before the scheduled start of the Reds-Mets game, Cincinnati scratched starter Aaron Harang because of low back pain.

Harang, 6-7 with a 5.02 ERA, was replaced by rookie Travis Wood, who will be making his second big-league start.

Wood pitched last Thursday in Chicago on an extra day's rest. Wood went seven-plus innings, allowed two hits and two runs, walking three and striking out four. Wood threw 91 pitches in his victory over the Cubs.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 27, 2010 1:10 pm
Edited on: June 27, 2010 8:48 pm
 

Reds' move unlike to lead to Volquez return


Edinson Volquez Could the Reds' latest move mean former All-Star Edinson Volquez is ready to return from "Tommy John" surgery?

Volquez is scheduled to make his second start for Triple-A Louisville, but he's been impressive in his quick rehab from Tommy John surgery last Aug. 3. He was also suspended 50 games for testing positive for performance enhancing drugs, but that suspension has expired. Still, it seems unlikely, as Volquez has made just one Triple-A start.

The Reds called up left-handed reliever Bill Bray, himself coming off of "Tommy John" surgery, and sent down Saturday's starter, Sam LeCure before Sunday's game with the Indians.

Bray last pitched in the big leagues in 2008, when he was 2-2 with a 2.87 ERA in 63 appearances for the Reds. He missed most of last season after undergoing surgery in April.

Reds manager Dusty Baker told the Cincinnati Enquirer 's Tom Ramstetter that the team needed left-handers in their bullpen for the upcoming series against the Phillies and their left-handed hitters.

LeCure lasted just 3 1/3 innings Saturday's victory over the Indians, allowing six hits and three runs, while walking four and striking out two. It was the worst start of the season for the rookie right-hander. LeCure was 1-4 with a  4.86 ERA in six starts with the Reds.

"He's pitched pretty well," Baker said. "Last night was probably the worst he's pitched. That's not why we made the move. When his spot comes up, then we'll see what our next move is. Sometimes when you're trying to win the pennant, you have to make these temporary auxiliary moves."

Volquez has made just one start for Louisville and the Reds have said they'd prefer for him to get a couple of weeks in to see how his arm responds. He pitched well in his first outing for the Bats, hitting 98 mph on the radar gun with his fastball in a victory.

More likely, though, the Reds would call up left-hander Matt Maloney for Thursday's start in Chicago. Maloney starter for the Bats on Saturday and is 6-4 with a 3.60 ERA in 14 starts at Louisville. Maloney made seven starts for the Reds last season. Another possibility is left-hander Travis Wood. Wood got the win on Friday for Louisville and 5-6 with a 3.12 ERA and Thursday's game against the Cubs is a day game, so the extra day would help his travel schedule. Wood battled into the last starts of spring training with rookie Mike Leake for the fifth spot in the rotation.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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




 
 
 
 
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