Small Ball, Long ball
The Reds hit three home runs off the Angels’ Matt Shoemaker in an 8-5 win on Monday but Joey Votte added a bunt to his blast and Jay Bruce singled to the opposite field and also bunted for a base hit.
“It has been a focus,” Bryan Price said. “The way teams want to defend them with the shift, getting a bunt down will help them. They’re working hard on it. It is good to see them rewarded.”
Jordan Pacheco, Votto and Adam Duvall hit their first home runs on Monday. The wind had something to do with Duvall’s opposite field blast but Votto’s hit the roof of the right field picnic area the sits above and beyond the 345 mark in rightfield.
Pacheco started at thirdbase. The former catcher is trying new positions to be a versatile bench player. It will give the Reds a power right-handed bat off the bench, who is able to play three postions firstbase, thirdbase and catcher, a luxury that few teams can afford.
Pacheco played for Hamilton’s favorite son, Jim Tracy while he was with the Colorado Rockies.
Duvall, who also hit a triple is battling Scott Schebler, who came to the Reds with Jose Peraza in the three-way trade invoving Todd Frazier. Schebler can play all three outfield positions. He chipped in with a single, double and two stolen bases.
Peraza,who shifted from shortstop to second base in the Braves organization because Atlanta had Andrelton Simmons, who the Brave thought would be their shortstop for a long time. Like the Reds, the Braves decided to rebuild and Simmons ended up with the Los Angeles Angels. Peraza was shipped to the Dodgers after he was moved to secondbase.
The Reds wanted him to take Brandon Phillips spot in the field. They made trades with the Diamondbacks and the Nationals but Phillips vetoed them as a 10-5 player.
On Tuesday Peraza had two hits and stole two bases. He also made a nice barehanded play from shortstop with the bases loaded to retire Johnny Giovatella. Peraza has also played centerfield.
“We look at Peraza as an everyday player. We think he can be a good offensive player too,” Price said. “If he can play other positions, it may allow him to play in the big leagues this year as opposed to the minor leagues.