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I am a freelance writer. I've covered the Cincinnati Reds, Bengals and others since 1992. I have a background in sales as well. I've sold consumer electronics, advertising and consumer package goods for companies ranging from the now defunct Circuit City to Procter&Gamble. I have worked as a stats operator for Xavier University, the University of Cincinnati, the College of Mount St. Joe and Colerain High School.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Reds Send Curtis Partch To Louisville Recall Pedro Villarreal

It was difficult for Dusty Baker to watch young Curtis Partch take a pounding against St. Louis on Friday night.

"It was really hard to sit there and watch a young man get scalded like that," Dusty Baker said. "People don't understand but I can understand why they don't.  They're yelling, 'get him out of there'.  I can understand their frustration because they come from hundreds of miles to see us play.  It might be the only game they see and they want to see us win.  I just don't want to burn my whole pitching staff.  We brough up Villarreal until Broxton is ready."

Pedro Villarreal made an emergency start for the Reds on June 5 against Colorado.  He has since been taken out of Louisville's starting rotation and put in their bullpen.

Broxton threw 50 pitches in a simulated game and is going to Indianapolis to pitch for Louisville on Sunday.

"I felt good," Broxton said.  "It's always nice to face batters but it's good to get the work in too.  We'll see how I feel then go from there."

Broxton expects to be back this week.

"It's a positive.  He's going to get two days in a row and doesn't have to go travel to get it," Baker said.  "His command is much better than it was last time.  For a veteran to throw a simulated game because there is not as much adrenaline.  As long as he feels good."

Todd Frazier is out of the lineup in favor of Jack Hannahan.

"It is more of a match up thing," Baker said.  "Westbrook throws a lot of sinkers.  He is tough on right-handers. We have to play Hannahan sometime too.  It is tough to watch Frazier struggle like that.  It's tough to struggle.  Most of the time you take it out on family sometimes.  You try not to."

So how do you get out of a slump?

"Well the first thing you got to do is quit counting, number one," Baker said.  "I see (Matt) Carpenter over there (Cardinals), he's 3-for-30.  I suggest you be more aggressive.  Most of the time when you're not hitting you have a quick shoulder or a quick hip and can't hit the ball away from you.  Guys that are hitting are hitting the ball away from them.  They are staying on the ball or staying closed.  Tommy Davis told me years ago, 'look to the off field. There are a lot of hits over there.' Most of the time when you're not hitting, you're not hitting the ball to the opposite field.  You're out in front.  Your kind of in no-man's land.  Which is a bad place to be.  You're behind the fastball and ahead of breaking balls."

How hard is it to stop counting?

"It is very hard," Baker said.  "Everybody let's you know.  You see your average going down every time you get in that box. The beauty of this game is you get to start over the next day.  You have to be strong mentally and actually go on the attack.  Most of the time when you're not hitting you are hitting with two strikes a lot.  You take one and the umpire calls a questionable pitch a strike.  You foul one off.  I've been there, 'you say damn I have two strikes already.  I just got in the box.'  Now you're 0 and 2.  You wonder if you're ever going to be 2 and 0 again.  You have to rely on your past.  When you're going good you're driving to the ballpark wondering how many hits you're going to get that day.  When you're in a bad spot, you're thinking about just getting one."

"I was 1-for-20 something," Baker said.  "I don't know.  I try to forget those slumps.  All I know is that I don't care what you're name is.  You're going to go through those times.  I remember Barry Bonds his slumps were like 0-for-7 with eight walks.  He's say,'I haven't gotten a hit in a week.'  But he'd only had seven at-bats this week."

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has Carpenter sitting out the game as well.

"Carpenter was facing a stiff fine if he came in any earlier today," Matheny said with a smile.  "There is such a fine line between doing things right and having production and not having production.  Carpenter is supposed to stay off the infield too.  I caught him last night before he left.  He was very frustrated.  He was beside himself a little bit.  Carpenter has had a lot of success for as young as he is.  A lot of guys who have had more time, know exactly what he's going through.  It is a huge learning opportunity for him.  It is going to happen again. He is going to have to continually figure out ways to right the ship.  It is going to come from hard work sure but it will also come from knowing when to slow down and back off."

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