Hoping for repeat of the success he found with previous lineup tinkering, Reds manager Dusty Baker slotted Jonny Gomes in the No. 2 spot in the lineup for the first time in his Cincinnati career Friday.
"That's the best lineup I could come up with," Baker said. "Hopefully, it will get him going the way it got Jay Bruce going."
Since a six-game stint in the No. 2 spot, Bruce is hitting .291 with five home runs and 13 RBI.
It didn't work on the first night with Gomes. He went 0-for-4 with a walk while serving as the Reds' designated hitter in a 5-4 loss at Cleveland.
"You still got to swing at strikes," Baker said. "I remember I put Glenallen Hill in front of Barry (Bonds). They were still throwing him balls, and he was still swinging at them."
Gomes is a free swinger, but Baker thinks at times Gomes is not aggressive enough.
"Perhaps Jonny will get more aggressive early in the count," Baker said. "He's hitting behind in the count a lot. That's makes it hard to hit."
Gomes, who is batting .176, thinks hitting in front of Joey Votto could help more than the mere fact of batting second.
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