Garrett walked two over one scoreless inning to pick up the save against Arizona on Friday. Garrett came on in the 10th inning and navigated around a pair of walks to pick up his second save of the season. One of the walks was intentional, so the right-hander's control wasn't as off as a quick glance at the box score might suggest. The outing was certainly an improvement over his previous two appearances, during which Garrett yielded a combined five runs and five hits over two innings.
Garrett gave up a grand slam in the ninth inning of Wednesday's 11-4 win over the Pirates, failing to record even a strike with any of the five fastballs that he threw, giving up three hits and two balls. He ultimately struck two batters out with sliders to end the game. This was a dreaded "get work" outing for Garrett, so perhaps we can cut some slack. However, it'll be interesting to see what the Reds do the next time they have a save situation. When Garrett has struggled in the past, it's been with his fastball against right-handed hitters, so this bears watching.
Garrett got the save in his first outing of the season Monday against the Pirates, despite allowing a solo homer to Bryan Reynolds and a subsequent single and walk, striking out one. This was Garrett's first outing of the season, so one could make an allowance that he was a little rusty after getting very little work this spring. He needed 25 pitches to get through the ninth, so it's possible he might not be up on Tuesday should another save situation emerge.
Garrett will be considered a closer alongside Lucas Sims early in the season, but the Reds won't open the year with a dedicated closer, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports. The joint closer role may wind up being better for the right-handed Sims than for the left-handed Garrett, as Garrett will likely find himself in the ninth inning less than half the time if the Reds strictly play the matchups. The Reds haven't said they'll avoid using a traditional closer all season, however, so Garrett could certainly surpass Sims if he outpitches his teammate early on. He's entering the regular season as hot as possible, striking out all nine batters he's faced this spring after being delayed by a bit of forearm soreness.
Garrett (forearm) struck out the side in Tuesday's spring training against the Padres, hitting 95 mph with his fastball and generating six whiffs against seven swings on his slider, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Garrett is ahead of teammate Lucas Sims, who also pitched Tuesday, in terms of both game action and results so far. Nonetheless, the two relievers are slated to be the top two options at the back end of the Reds' bullpen.
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