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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.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Curtain Closes In Goodyear. Ready Or Not Here Come Your Cincinnati Reds

The Reds closed shop in Goodyear, Arizona with a 9-6 loss to the Cleveland Indians.

Brandon Finnegan was erratic in his last tune up before he takes the ball for the first game that counts against the Phillies a week from now on April 5.

The Indians pounded Finnegan for four runs, three earned in four innings.  He gave up seven hits, including a three-run home run to Yandy Diaz.  Finnegan walked three and struck out three.

“Finnegan didn’t look real good,” Bryan Price said. “He was erratic with his command of all three (pitches).  He did make some good pitches with his fastball, a couple sinkers for double plays and a change up.’

Finnegan had a subpar spring.

“I’ve never had a good one,” Finnegan said.

Finnegan pitched 21 innings and allowed 17 runs but he knows when the bell rings, he’ll be ready.

“This is what you have with young pitchers,” Price said. “He’s a 23-year old kid, who has grown up pitching in the big leagues.  He works hard at his craft.  We’ll see a very good version of Brandon Finnegan this season.”

The Reds scored three runs in the first inning against Carlos Carrasco using the Opening Day lineup, Billy Hamilton, Jose Peraza, Joey Votto, Adam Duvall, Eugenio Suarez, Zack Cozart and Tucker Barnhart.

Hamilton walked to open the bottom of the first.  Peraza hit his second Cactus League home run. Adam Duvall hit his third in the last two days and sixth of the spring off Carrasco.

The Indians eclipsed the Reds the next inning against Finnegan. Edwin Encarnacion walked, Jose Ramirez singled.  Brandon Guyer reached on an error by Peraza. Austin Jackson brought a run home with a sacrifice fly. Diaz hit his long home run to rightfield to put the Tribe on top.

Barnhart doubled and scored on Hamilton’s single in the fourth to tie the game.

Louis Coleman, who will start the season in Louisville, gave up three runs in the fifth.  Michael Brantley hit his second home run. Ramirez doubled and Guyer homered.

Scooter Gennett, who the Reds picked up from the Milwaukee Brewers on waivers Tuesday, homered in his first Reds’ at bat.  The Reds picked him up because they lacked a left-handed bat on the bench.  Gennett, who was born in Cincinnati but grew up in Sarasota, took World Series hero and left-hander Andrew Miller out of the park in left center.

The Indians added a run in the sixth off Nefi Ogando, who was victimized by a home run by Francisco Lindor,and a run in the seventh off Wandy Peralta, who be the Reds’ third lefty out of the bullpen along with Cody Reed and Tony Cingrani,

The Reds will bring seven rookies and Bronson Arroyo the anti-rookie with them to Cincinnati after dropping five of the last six games in the Cactus League to finish with a 16-19-1 report card.

The Reds have games against the organizations Future Stars on Friday night in Louisville and on Saturday afternoon in Dayton.  The Reds will work out from 11-1 on Sunday to tune up for the Opener against Philadelphia at 4:10 on Monday.

“It is very important that we play these games to stay sharp,” Price said.  “Otherwise we have the challenge of having five off days in six days.”

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