Chillin’ in Colorado
Forty-eight degrees as I write this. "Raw in the Rockies." Reds will try to gain a split tonight after losing 3-0 Wednesday. They’ve only lost one series all year.
Another "quality start" Wednesday night, though the Reds didn’t make some plays in the field, and they didn’t hit with men on base. Despite Brandon Claussen’s inability to field a ball hit back up the middle, he still gave his team 6 2/3 innings and three runs. If Reds starters do that every night, the Reds will win a lot of games.
Rich Aurilia will be re-examined today. Tough night, tough weather, tough guy. Hopefully he won’t be out long. The "good news" is that the Reds can use their first-base platoon the next several days since Cincinnati is scheduled to face right-handers tonight, then all three games in Arizona, and they have Monday off. Scott Hatteberg would presumably start those games at first base anyway.
Thinking of Rich reminds me of a moment that stood out to me earlier this season and said something about him and this team.
The Reds had just beaten Carlos Zambrano and the Cubs 8-3 at Wrigley Field. I was at the entrance to the Reds clubhouse to grab the winning pitcher, Eric Milton, for a radio interview. As I waited for Eric, I saw all the players give each other the obligatory high fives and handshakes, as they do after every win. But what struck me was how happy Rich was — on a day he had gone 0-for-4. It spoke volumes to me as to what kind of competitor he is. As long as the team wins, he’s happy.
This is a great city, great part of the country. Beautiful, just not today. Oh well…
To answer some questions you’ve asked me over the past week:
I’m not sure where Jacob Cruz is right now. The ex-Red was given his release. I’ve been asking around, and no one seems to know where Jacob is. Searching the Web site for minor league baseball, they had him with Louisville the first couple of weeks of the season but list no current baseball address. What a super person he is, and a good hitter. I’m sure he’ll hook on somewhere.
Someone asked about Todd Coffey and whether or not he could be a closer in the big leagues. Hard to know until he’s actually put into that spot. It’s amazing how much more difficult those last three outs seem to be than the first 24. I think he’s got the stuff to do it. And a couple of other things that work in his favor: He appears to be fearless on the mound. And he also seems to have what is a prerequisite for a closer, or any pitcher: a short memory. I think he probably will get that chance at some point. Yes, I think he could close at some point in the future. And the spot he’s in now, setting up in tough situations (with runners often on base) is a great training ground.