Reds worry about Chapman's loss of velocity

BY foxsports • April 14, 2011

Catcher Ramon Hernandez looked at the readout on the scoreboard and knew he had to do something. Left-hander Aroldis Chapman's velocity went from otherworldly to big-league average.

"(Tuesday), he threw what 93, 94?" Hernandez said. "Then (Wednesday), he's throwing 91. He's throws almost 100 over every pitch. Now, he can't get up to 93. There's got to be something. You can't lose it in one day.

Pitching Bryan Price and trainer Paul Lessard came out after Chapman walked Jason Bartlett in the eighth of the Reds' 3-2 loss to San Diego.

He said he was OK and stayed in the game.

"He's young kid," Hernandez said. "My guess is he wants to battle through it, like anybody who's a player will do. You got some pain, you won't say nothing. You're trying to tough it out."

The Reds took out Chapman after he retired the next batter.

"He said he was OK," manager Dusty Baker said. "But that's Cuban baseball. We took him out as a precaution."

Hernandez and Chapman spoke heatedly in the dugout.

"I told him, 'You know what, I know you want to go through it,'" Hernandez said. "'I understand that you're one of the main guys for seventh and eighth. ... If you have something sore, let them know. They'll give you one or two days off. It's better that you take two or three days.'

"He was mad he came out the game. He's young. He'll learn. It's better to miss two or three days than a month."

NOTES, QUOTES

--1B Joey Votto went 3-for-4 Wednesday. He's had has hits in 12 of the Reds' 13 games, and he's batting .444 for the season.

--2B Brandon Phillips tweaked a groin muscle while planting to make a throw in the eighth innings Wednesday. INF Miguel Cairo replaced him in the ninth. "I'll be playing Friday," Phillips said. "It's nothing big. I'll ice on the off day (Thursday.)"

--RF Jay Bruce was out of the lineup Wednesday because he tweaked his groin and trying to get back to second base in fifth inning Tuesday night. "I'm OK," Bruce said. "I'm available. (Manager Dusty Baker) just wanted to give me (Wednesday) so I'm off two days." The Reds have an off day Thursday.

--RHP Homer Bailey (sore right shoulder) rejoined the team after throwing a three-inning simulated game in Goodyear, Ariz., on Tuesday "It went well," Bailey said. "I was throwing a lot of strikes. Command wasn't an issue. Velocity was 93 to 97 (mph)." Bailey is scheduled to make a rehab start Sunday for Class AAA Louisville.

--RHP Johnny Cueto (right shoulder impingement) rejoined the team after throwing a two-inning simulated game at the team's complex in Goodyear, Ariz., on Monday. "I felt good," he said. "I threw every pitch. I'm ready of Louisville." Cueto is schedule to make a rehab start for the Reds' Class AAA affiliate on Saturday.

BY THE NUMBERS: 3 -- Losses for RHP Nick Masset, a majority of the defeats the Reds have suffered in their 8-4 starts.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Very disappointing. We had two games we were close to winning. To have a winning road trip on the first West Coast trip, the first trip of the year, would have really been positive thing. It would have said a lot about us." -- 1B Joey Votto, on the Reds' 3-3 road trip.

MEDICAL WATCH:

--RHP Homer Bailey (sore right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 24. He threw a bullpen session April 8, and he pitched a simulated game in extended spring training April 12. He is scheduled to make a rehab start for Class AAA Louisville on April 17.

--RHP Johnny Cueto (right shoulder impingement) had to leave his March 11 start after two innings, then had to leave after one inning March 19. He went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 22. He threw two innings in extended spring training April 11. He is scheduled to make a rehab start for Class AAA Louisville on April 16.

--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 was shut down from throwing.

--OF Fred Lewis (strained right side) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27. He was rehabbing in extended spring training as of April 8.

--RHP Jose Arredondo (Tommy John surgery in February 2010) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 25. He began a rehab assignment with Class AA Carolina on April 11.


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