The Reds optioned IF Kristopher Negron, IF Neftali Soto and RHP Josh Judy to Triple A Louisville. IF Didi Gregorius, IF Henry Rodriguez and RHP Pedro Villarreal were optioned to Double A Pensacola. IF/OF Donald Lutz and RHP Kyle Lotzkar were sent to high A Bakersfield.
The Reds reassigned C Tucker Barnhart, RHP Nick Christiani, RHP Daniel Corcino, C Brian Esposito, RHP Sean Gallagher, LHP Donnie Joseph, RHP Chad Reineke and RHP Brett Tomko to the minor league camp.
"This is the latest we've made first cuts since I've been in baseball," manager Dusty Baker said. 'Doubleheaders and split squads had something to do with it. We cut a lot of guys that were impressive but at bats and innings are growing short the farther along we get into spring training."
Lutz, Gregorius and Rodriguez impressed all who saw them.
"I want them to go where they're going with confidence. We don't want them to get big leaugitis and start acting different," Baker said. "I told them not to do that.
Tomko, who is trying to resurrect his career after a pinch nerve cost him the 2010 season, pitched well in three starts. Tomko pitched six innings, including three perfect frames Friday night. He had a 4.50 ERA but the runs he gave up came in a nightmare of sun and wind against Seattle in Peoria on his first outing.
"I told them before I signed that I wanted to make the team but I would go to the minor leagues and give them depth," Tomko said.
Tomko was the Reds first pick in 1995 (2nd Round). He has 100 major league wins over 14 seasons.