Reds 6, Rays 4 (7-2)
- Percy, Wheeler, Glover, Talbot and Mason combined to give up no runs and no hits from inning 5 through 9. This is a far cry from the disaster that was the bullpen last year.
- Zobrist continued his hot spring going 2 for 3 with a double and a run scored. He is batting .421 on the spring.
- Longoria only got one at-bat but he made it count banging out a double and scoring a run.
- E-jack gave up six (five earned) in the third inning. This is a lot like the E-jack of old. He can pitch well most of the time but can't avoid those implosions in certain innings. We were hoping this would be a thing of the past after Maddon praised his mental game the other day.
- The defense stunk. Four errors is not acceptable in a major league baseball game even if it is spring training. Richard contributed two and Brignac (he of the many errors in the minors) and Ruggiano (the defensive specialist) each threw in one.
Will it be more of the same from E-Jack this year? After looking so good in those first two starts, this outing represented a major reality check. How poorly will he have to pitch the spring to not make the rotation? How many bad outings before he is on the trading block? These are likely questions that Silverman and Freidman have discussed, but are only issues we can speculate on. Given his raw talents we think he will be given a huge cushion before he is pulled from the rotation or put on the trading block. However, if Neimann continues to pitch well the situation could change.
It is very discouraging to see the Rays commit so many errors. The horrendousness of the defense last year has been well documented and a repeat performance in that category could lead to another long season. However, all of the errors made yesterday were by guys who won't be on the 5 man roster so it is unclear how much can be extrapolated from these poor performances.