Reds looking to sweep Cubs, stay hot
The Cincinnati Reds have sent a wake-up call to the rest of the league. They mean business again.
10 of their last 12 games have been victories, and the starting pitching has been outstanding. They are back on top in the NL Central and look to complete a sweep of the Chicago Cubs tonight.
Here's the team reports for both the Reds and the Cubs;
The Reds chose the disabled list method to try to get left-hander Aroldis Chapman back on track.
Chapman on Monday was placed on the 15-day disabled list because of left shoulder inflammation. He was shut down for four days earlier in the season with a similar problem.
"It's kind of like what we did last time," trainer Paul Lessard said. "We'll treat him to get it calmed down so he has a pain-free range of motion before we start cranking. After a couple of days, it should be calmed down."
Chapman did not have an MRI.
Reds manager Dusty Baker thinks Chapman will return when the 15 days are up.
"I'm very confident it will be," Baker said. "He's in good spirits. He knows he needs it and we need it. If he comes back after 15 days, we have four months to go. It's better to take care of it now."
Chapman, the 23-year-old Cuban, has walked 12 batters over 1 1/3 innings and four appearances.
"The last two weeks I've been feeling discomfort in my shoulder," he said through a translator.
Chapman's last good outing came on April 27.
"I could not make the 100 percent effort that I wanted to," he said. "I believe that was creating my failure on my command."
--LHP Bill Bray is the only left-hander in the Reds' bullpen with Aroldis Chapman on the disabled list. "We'll move Billy Bray to a more definitive role toward the end of the game," manager Dusty Baker said. Left-handers are 2-for-20 against Bray this year after hitting .106 off him last year.
--RHP Jordan Smith was recalled to take LHP Aroldis Chapman's spot. Smith had not allowed a run in four appearances (3 2/3 innings) at Louisville since he was optioned there on May 5.
--LHP Dontrelle Willis might have gotten the call to take Aroldis Chapman's spot on the roster in Willis had he been healthy. "We talked about it," Reds manager general manager Walt Jocketty said. "But he tweaked a groin the other day. It didn't make sense to bring him up."
--C Ryan Hanigan returned to the lineup after missing two games. He was hit on the right wrist by a pitch Friday. "It's a little tender," he said. "But it feels better."
--2B Brandon Phillips extended his hitting streak to seven games with an RBI single. He's hitting .393 with a homer and nine RBI during the streak.
BY THE NUMBERS: 7 -- Games that the Reds are over .500, a season high.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "It was kind of like a thunderstorm came in. All the sudden, we had seven runs. It seemed like we woke up all at once. (Carlos) Zambrano, this guy can shut you down, shut you out." -- Reds manager Dusty Baker on the Reds' seven-run sixth Monday night.
--LHP Aroldis Chapman (left shoulder inflammation) was placed on the disabled list May 16, but the Reds viewed it mainly as precautionary and didn't think he would need more than the 15 days before he's ready to pitch again.
--C Ryan Hanigan (sore right hand) left the May 13 game. He didn't play May 14 and was supposed to start May 15, but his hand was still too sore. He was back in the lineup May 16.
--INF Juan Francisco (strained left calf) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 17. He began a rehab assignment with Class AAA Louisville on May 9.
--RHP Jared Burton (right shoulder inflammation) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 29. He suffered a setback in early April, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on April 18. He underwent arthroscopic surgery April 22, and the timetable for his return was unknown.
The Cubs are suffering through some growing pains, both literally and figuratively, with a couple of their young players.
In the literal sense, pitcher Andrew Cashner apparently has suffered a big setback as he tries to come back from a strained right rotator cuff. Cashner, 24, will undergo an MRI this week after experiencing tightness in his right shoulder while rehabbing in Arizona.
This looks to be a significant problem for Cashner, who went on the DL on April 8. The Cubs will be extra careful with him, so don't expect to see him anytime soon.
Outfielder Tyler Colvin, 25, is batting only .113 after a 20-homer season in 2010. Because of that, the Cubs optioned him to Class AAA Iowa after Monday night's 7-4 loss to the Reds. That move had been rumored for several days.
Manager Mike Quade acknowledged before Monday's 7-4 loss at Cincinnati that something would have to be done soon about Colvin's situation.
"That's an ongoing thing, and I need to talk to Colvin today," Quade said. "Somehow, we need to get something resolved very soon. We'll see how it looks tomorrow. It's going to be addressed today, for sure. It's been a tough stretch for him, and growing pains can be tough sometimes."
GM Jim Hendry said afterward Colvin had to go down and play for a few weeks.
--RHP Randy Wells will make his first minor league rehab start Tuesday night for Class A Peoria. Wells has been out since his April 4 start with a strained right forearm. With the addition of LHP Doug Davis to the rotation, the Cubs won't rush Wells back. He'll likely make a rehab start next Sunday for Class AAA (Des Moines) Iowa and then possibly be activated for the May 27 game against Pittsburgh.
--RHP Andrew Cashner will be a starting pitcher long term, according to manager Mike Quade. Of course, Cashner first must come back from a right rotator cuff strain, and he'll have another MRI this week after experiencing tightness while rehabbing in Arizona. Cashner, a closer in college, pitched in relief for the Cubs last year but opened the season as the No. 5 starter. "Cashner's a starter, and that's what we're committed to," Quade said.
--2B Darwin Barney had three hits (3-for-4 with a walk), giving him a career-best three multi-hit games in a row. Barney is batting .345 and has 18 RBI, which ties him for second on the team with SS Starlin Castro, behind only LF Alfonso Soriano, who has 23 RBI.
--RHP Carlos Zambrano had won five straight starts at the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati and looked well on his way to another, but he couldn't hold a 4-0 lead in the sixth as the Reds chased him while on the way to scoring seven. "You all saw what happened," said Zambrano, who fell to 4-2 with a 4.89 ERA. "It's disappointing for me. It was all my fault. We played good for four or five innings. If I consider myself a good pitcher, I should be able to keep the score like that. I'm disappointed in myself."
--CF Marlon Byrd extended his hitting streak to a career-best 16 games with a sixth-inning single. Byrd also singled in the eighth and finished the game 2-for-4. He's batting .371 (23-for-62) during the streak.
--LHP Doug Davis has not been with the team since making his season debut Saturday. He is with his wife, Chantelle, who gave birth Sunday. "He gave us five pretty good innings," manager Mike Quade said. "Go have your baby, and we'll see you in Boston."
BY THE NUMBERS: 10 -- The Cubs played the second of 10 straight night games Monday. (A scheduled day game Sunday was rained out.) According to Elias Sports Bureau, that's the longest consecutive stretch of night games in team history. The Cubs played nine night games in a row in 1960 and 1992.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "You get beat, you get beat. But we're beating ourselves way too much, and we've got enough issues competing as it is without beating ourselves. When I see that, if I'm going to lose sleep, I'm going to have my say before I do, that's all." -- Manager Mike Quade after the Cubs blew a 4-0 lead to the Reds and lost 7-4.
--C Geovany Soto (left groin strain) went on the 15-day disabled list May 11.
--RHP Andrew Cashner (mild right rotator cuff strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 6. He began a throwing program April 22, and he threw off a mound for the first time May 2. He threw batting practice May 10, and he was rehabbing in Arizona in mid-May. He had a setback May 16 and was scheduled for another MRI.
--RHP Randy Wells (slight right forearm strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 5. He began a throwing program April 22, and he threw off a mound for the first time May 2. He threw batting practice May 10, and he will make his first rehab start May 17 for Class A Peoria. There is a chance he could start for the Cubs on May 22.
--RHP Brian Schlitter (strained right forearm) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 22. The timetable for his return was unknown.