2/14/2014 6:45 P.M. ET
Healthy Cueto poised to bounce back in '14
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Reds ace Johnny Cueto, who was limited to 11 starts in 2013 because of a strained right lat muscle, reported that he was feeling 100 percent on the first day of Spring Training Friday.
Cueto worked out much of the winter at a Reds facility in the Dominican Republic.
"I practiced my long toss," Cueto said. "I threw long all the time. I did a lot of training. Now I can come back ready."
Cueto, who endured three stints on the disabled list last season, said he was instructed to shorten his delivery by manager Bryan Price. Since 2011, Cueto had a twisting motion that turned his back to the hitter. Price wanted to keep Cueto from flying open during his delivery, but the change was also about health.
"There are times when he can get so dramatic in the turn, that it creates a more difficult time to repeat the mechanics," Price said. "He's coming off a lat strain and a history of some shoulder fatigue and things of that nature. We're trying to make it easier for him to repeat the delivery."
Latos has minor knee surgery to repair meniscus
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Instead of working out with his teammates on the first day of Reds Spring Training, starting pitcher Mat Latos underwent left knee surgery on Friday to repair torn meniscus cartilage.
Latos was injured a couple of days ago when he slipped while long tossing. He will not be able to resume his throwing program for at least 10 days.
"He felt something, and they looked at it," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said. "He came in the next day and saw there was probably an issue."
An MRI exam confirmed the meniscus tear. The surgery was held up until team medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek could get to town and perform the operation. A small flap of the cartilage was removed during the arthroscopic procedure.
"[Kremchek] said everything went well," Jocketty said. "It was an easy repair, a quick repair. It was a very minor surgery."
Over 32 starts in 2013, Latos was 14-7 with a 3.16 ERA. In 210 2/3 innings, he allowed 197 hits and struck out 187 batters with 58 walks. He became the team's de facto ace while Johnny Cueto was on the disabled list. After the season, Latos needed surgery to remove bone chips from his right elbow, and his rehab and throwing program had been going smoothly.
What isn't known yet is whether Latos will be ready by Opening Day, on March 31.
"We'll just see how he progresses," Jocketty said. "Right now, I can't say whether it would or not. We don't think so, but we'll see."
The Reds, who added depth behind their five-man rotation during the offseason, could have an opening for free-agent signings like Chien-Ming Wang or Jeff Francis. Both were signed to Minor League deals and are non-roster invites. Rookie David Holmberg was acquired in a trade from the D-backs in December.
Reds broadcaster Chris Welsh, who pitched in the big leagues from 1981-86, noted during Jocketty's session with reporters that he once had his meniscus repaired.
"I think I pitched on it the 22nd day, in a game," Welsh said.
"And that was 50 years ago. Technology has advanced," Jocketty joked.
Jocketty downplayed worries over Latos' status. The Reds will certainly need his contribution to contend in the National League Central again.
"Is it unfortunate? Yeah, but it's not something that we are overly concerned about," Jocketty said. "I didn't want to start the camp off with an injury before we got started. Sometimes, it happens."
Broxton's rehab moves to Reds camp
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Reds reliever Jonathan Broxton, who had surgery to repair a torn muscle in his right forearm in August, reported no arm issues after an offseason of rehab.
"I'm throwing three days a week now," Broxton said on Friday, the first day of Reds Spring Training. "That's the only hold-back that's part of the throwing program I'm on. Everything is fine and should be ready to rock and roll. No pain and no setbacks. Everything has been good."
Broxton is throwing at distances of 105 feet and could increase to 120 feet next week.
"Hopefully by the end of the month, I'm [throwing] off of the mound," Broxton said.
It still remains to be seen if Broxton would be available in the bullpen on Opening Day.
"Either way, when he comes back, he'll be ready to go," manager Bryan Price said.
Broxton had family on his mind as well on Friday. His hometown of Waynesboro, Ga., was hit hard by an ice storm this week. His wife and three kids, including a 5-month-old baby, have been without power in their home. Although a generator is in the process of being installed, everyone has been sleeping near the fireplace to keep warm. Broxton showed some of the storm's damage to trees and power lines on his property.
"My Dad said it's the worst he's seen in 60 years," said Broxton, who hoped that his family could fly to Arizona on Saturday.
Marshall taking steps to keep shoulder healthy
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Shoulder tendinitis put Reds left-handed reliever Sean Marshall on the disabled list last season from May 24-Sept. 16. In mid-July, he was almost ready to return when he had a setback. Overall, that limited Marshall to 16 appearances for the season.
Marshall worked in the offseason to make sure the injury didn't repeat itself this season.
"I'm at full go," Marshall said on Friday as Reds camp opened. "I had a nice offseason. I did a lot of stuff to keep the shoulder strong and stable. So far, I've thrown off the mound twice. I've been building my arm strength up in January. I'm feeling good. I'll throw in the bullpen with the guys [Saturday]."
Marshall is behind schedule, compared to past Spring Trainings, but that is by design.
"I think last year, I had five or six bullpens before I got here, just because I wanted to feel fresh and strong," Marshall said. "I'll take it a little slower this year in Spring Training and peak at the right time, instead of a week and a half before camp ends and injure yourself."