CINCINNATI -- Todd Frazier is one of the youngest players on the Reds, but his at-bat music is the oldest. When Frazier comes to the plate at Great American Ball Park, fans will hear one of two songs: "Come Fly With Me" or "Fly Me to the Moon."Both songs were recorded by Frank Sinatra, whose first album came out in 1946, 40 years before Frazier was born. "He's a Jersey guy, and he's the best in the world," said Frazier, who is from Toms River, N.J. "I love him." He said he started listening to Sinatra when he was in high school. Kent Frank, Frazier's coach at Toms River South High, was picky about the music his team would warm up to. Frazier described Frank as "an old-school guy." "He always played old songs," Frazier said. "Any old song. You know: [Paul Simon's] 'Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard.' No new stuff." Frazier said everybody in the Reds organization knows about his love of Sinatra, especially after Spring Training. During a dinner in Arizona with about 100 people, manager Dusty Baker was giving a speech. After a while, he grew tired of talking, though. He turned to Frazier and told him it was time to sing.
Frazier obliged, with a Sinatra tune.
Arroyo simply ineffective recently, not injured
CINCINNATI -- After Bronson Arroyo's start Wednesday, manager Dusty Baker wondered whether his pitcher was physically OK. As it turns out, injuries are not to blame for Arroyo's recent struggles."I talked to the trainers, and they said that he's fine," Baker said Friday. "Sometimes you're just not pitching effectively. There's not always a reason or excuse; sometimes things ain't going right. You get to this point in the season, everybody's got some aches and pains." Arroyo is 7-9 this season and ranks last in the five-man rotation with a 5.58 ERA. He has given up at least four earned runs in each of his last six starts. On Wednesday, he allowed four earned runs on seven hits in six innings. If Baker chose to replace Arroyo in the rotation, Edinson Volquez could be a candidate to take his place. Volquez is on the same pitching schedule with Triple-A Louisville as Arroyo is with Cincinnati. Both are supposed to make their next starts Monday. Since being optioned to Louisville on July 8, Volquez is 1-0 with a 2.33 ERA, including six shutout innings on Wednesday. Volquez, of course, was sent down after struggling mightily for Cincinnati, where he is 5-4 with a 5.93 ERA this season. Far and away the most pressing issue for Arroyo this season has been the long ball -- he has allowed a Major League-high 30 homers this year. As Baker pointed out, though, Arroyo has not been "super wild." He has issued the same number of walks as home runs, compared to 73 strikeouts. "I look at stats all the time," Baker said, "I've never seen a guy have equal walks and homers. ... That's the most amazing stat I've ever seen."
Cozart has brace removed, taking swings
CINCINNATI -- The hard brace has been removed from Zack Cozart's left arm, and the shortstop is slowly resuming baseball activity.Recovering from a hyperextended left elbow, Cozart had the brace removed during Thursday's game, and on Friday afternoon he played catch and hit off a tee. Head athletic trainer Paul Lessard said he wants to add one extra element to Cozart's rehab each day, so if he feels sore the next day the trainers will know why. On Saturday, Cozart will start taking cuts on balls tossed underhand, in addition to more swings off a tee. The injury was to Cozart's non-throwing arm, so defensively he needs to focus on becoming more comfortable receiving the ball with his glove. Cozart suffered the injury against Atlanta last Saturday, just his 11th game since getting called up to Cincinnati. He is hitting .324 with a pair of homers in 37 at-bats.
Baker finds no issue in Cairo's comments
CINCINNATI -- A day after Miguel Cairo called out his teammates, manager Dusty Baker said he is fine with veterans vocalizing their frustrations."I was Miguel at some point in time," Baker said. "It means more, a lot of times, coming from teammates than it does coming from people of authority. I don't put a muzzle on people." Baker, who played in the league for 19 seasons, said it is more common for players to express their anger through the media than they used to. When he played, those conversations were more direct between teammates. He added that reporters are more likely to write negatively today than when he played. "It's straight-up headlines, you know what I mean," Baker said. "There's a need for news. That's why things have changed." Following Thursday afternoon's 10-9 loss to the Mets, Cairo was emphatic that his team needed to change its attitude, saying, "We stink" among other pointed comments. Moments later, Cairo admitted that his words were calculated. He hoped that, through the media, he could light a fire under his team. "I want to win, that's it," he said. "There's nothing wrong with that."
Tyler Jett is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.