7/31/2013 3:25 P.M. ET
Baker scratches head at mistakes on basepaths
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
SAN DIEGO -- The Reds' offense has been in a deep funk during the latter half of the team's West Coast road trip, which wraps up Wednesday against the Padres. But there have also been mental mistakes on the bases. Asked if his players were pressing to try to snap a five-game losing streak, Reds manager Dusty Baker addressed the issues Wednesday.
"They might be trying to do more than they are capable of doing," Baker said. "You still have to be smart about it. On this road trip, we've been tricked by the schoolyard play."
Shin-Soo Choo was fooled into returning to first base on a Joey Votto hit Thursday against the Dodgers and tagged out. On Tuesday against the Padres, Zack Cozart rounded too far from second base when the third baseman faked a throw to first on an infield hit by Devin Mesoraco and was caught for an out.
"You see that some of the pros can get tricked on the amateur plays," Baker said. "You don't understand it, but it happens. You don't like it. You're scratching your head sometimes that it happens."
Baker found himself thinking about the fans during the losing streak, namely a couple he met the other day.
"There's a girl and her husband the other night after the tough loss, I thought about her all game [Tuesday]," Baker said. "They've been to nine games this year and we've lost all of them. I promised her yesterday that we weren't going to lose that one. Her family is telling her not to go to any more games. Her family is blaming them. They followed us from Cincinnati to L.A. and to here."
Reds stand pat during Jocketty's quietest Deadline
SAN DIEGO -- The non-waiver Trade Deadline came and went Wednesday for the Reds like it did for much of baseball, with no deals being made.
The primary need, a right-handed bat, was not added to Cincinnati's roster, nor was any pitching.
"Today was completely dead -- nothing," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said. "This was the quietest Trade Deadline day I've had. It started to pick up the last few days like it always does. [Tuesday] was very busy. But in the end, the guys we wanted weren't available and didn't get traded."
Jocketty would not identify the players the Reds targeted, but it appeared the club had at least inquired on outfielder Hunter Pence and lefty reliever Javier Lopez from the Giants, and Cubs lefty reliever James Russell.
The asking prices in return were prohibitive throughout.
Even though the offense has been in a major funk in recent days, Jocketty wasn't highly pressured to make a trade. That's because the Reds remain confident they will soon have Ryan Ludwick back. Ludwick, who has been out with a shoulder injury since Opening Day, is on a rehab assignment.
In the end, the club felt there was no one on the market that was better than the players currently on the disabled list -- Ludwick, Johnny Cueto, and relievers Jonathan Broxton and Sean Marshall.
"We were looking at trying to upgrade the offense any way we could," Jocketty said. "We're waiting to get Ludwick back. He'll be back in a week to 10 days, two weeks, whatever it is. We were just seeing who could help now. There weren't any significant pieces out there available.
"We looked at bullpen pieces in case -- through the whole process, not just the last few days -- not knowing until recently about Marshall and Broxton. Marshall will probably be back in a few weeks. We checked on a lot of guys who weren't traded."
Now that the non-waiver Trade Deadline has passed, deals involving players on the 40-man roster cannot be made unless the players already have cleared waivers. That means the player must be offered to the other teams in reverse order of the standings, and if he is claimed by one of the teams, he cannot be traded.
The club that placed the player on waivers can either withdraw the request and keep the player, or let the player go to the claiming team, which would then have the rights to the player.
"We'll see if things pick up after Aug. 1," Jocketty said.
Choo rests sore ankle, eyes consecutive off-days
SAN DIEGO -- Reds center fielder and leadoff hitter Shin-Soo Choo was again out of the lineup Wednesday as he is still bothered by a sore left ankle. Choo started in left field during Tuesday's 4-2 loss to the Padres and there was a sense of improvement, but he still isn't 100 percent.
"It's a lot better," Choo said. "Being off today and tomorrow with a team off-day, I'm positive that I will feel much, much better. Yesterday, I felt totally different. I don't want to make it worse. I can sprint with no problem and change direction. Hitting, I felt a pinch in my ankle. I'm a little sore and my timing is different. It's not normal."
Choo sprained his ankle stealing second base Sunday, when he slid late into the bag after entering the game in Los Angeles as a pinch-hitter. Derrick Robinson again replaced Choo in center field and the leadoff spot for Wednesday's series finale against the Padres.
Still no throwing program for injured ace Cueto
SAN DIEGO -- Reds ace Johnny Cueto has yet to begin a throwing program as he recovers from a strained right lat muscle. The injury forced the right-hander on the 15-day disabled list for the third time this season on June 29, a day after he left a start against Texas early with the strain.
The Reds do not have a target date for when Cueto might begin throwing, and he did not accompany the team on its West Coast road trip that wraps up Wednesday against the Padres.
"He's doing strengthening stuff and building up endurance through exercise, but not throwing," Reds pitching coach Bryan Price said. "I think in his situation, there has to be a definite confidence amongst all medical and training staff that the injury itself is healed and that we can begin the throwing program without huge concern he's going to re-injure it."
Five former Reds up for induction in club's HOF
SAN DIEGO -- The Reds Hall of Fame announced Wednesday that five former players will be on their modern player ballot for induction as part of the 2014 class.
The candidates are: relievers Jeff Brantley (1994-97), John Franco (1984-89) and Danny Graves (1997-2005), and outfielders Ken Griffey Jr. (2000-08) and Reggie Sanders (1991-98).
Fans may cast ballots August 1-31 online at RedsMuseum.org or at ballot boxes located at the Reds Hall of Fame, Great American Ball Park and Kings Island.