6/1/2014 9:14 P.M. ET
Votto could start rehab assignment this week
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
PHOENIX -- Reds manager Bryan Price was pleased to hear that injured first baseman Joey Votto has made good progress with a left quadriceps strain when the two spoke Saturday.
"He's feeling much, much better. I'm very encouraged by the conversation," Price said Sunday.
Votto, who has been working out in Cincinnati during the road trip, could begin a rehab assignment in the Minor Leagues sometime this week.
"We discussed the importance of it," Price said. "His situation -- with the soreness and the strength deficit he had when we went on the road to Philly and Washington -- was pretty significant. The only way really to have any understanding of if this is behind him is to play."
Votto has not played for the Reds since May 15 and went on the disabled list May 21. He was eligible for activation Saturday.
The plan was for Votto to have another workout Sunday, take Monday off to rest, and reassess on Tuesday.
"We'll get a chance to see him when we get back. We want to make sure he feels good for a couple of days," Price said.
Votto's rehab assignment would likely be at Triple-A Louisville or Class A Advanced Dayton and could be for one or two games.
"None of this stuff is written in stone," Price noted.
Hamilton gets two days to rest sore elbow
PHOENIX -- Reds center fielder and leadoff hitter Billy Hamilton was a late scratch before Sunday's game vs. the D-backs because of a sore right elbow. Hamilton was replaced by Skip Schumaker, while Chris Heisey played right field and batted leadoff.
Hamilton's elbow started bothering him Saturday, when he made a long throw to third base after Paul Goldschmidt's deep drive to center field advanced A.J. Pollock. Hamilton has the benefit of resting two days since Monday is a scheduled day off for the team.
"I'm going to see the doctor tomorrow and I should be OK for Tuesday," Hamilton said. "It was a shock [manager Bryan Price] took me out today because I didn't know I was coming out. He knows a little better than I do. It's his decision. I feel a lot better now. I got some treatment and got it worked on a little bit. We'll see how it goes the next couple of days."
Ludwick to share playing time in left
PHOENIX -- Ryan Ludwick started in left field for the Reds on Sunday vs. the D-backs, but the position no longer belonged to him.
As the team, and Ludwick, have lacked production, manager Bryan Price recently told him he would be mixing and matching at the position.
"He was very professional about it," Price said. "It's a very difficult situation to talk to an established player about sharing playing time. He was a total pro about it and I really appreciated it. He could have made it a lot more difficult and he didn't."
Ludwick will be sharing time with Skip Schumaker and Chris Heisey. Schumaker made the last two starts in left field and was 2-for-5 with two runs scored in Saturday's 5-0 win. He started Sunday in center field in place of Billy Hamilton, who was a late scratch with a sore right elbow.
In 43 games, entering Sunday, Ludwick was batting .246 with three home runs and 17 RBIs. He had a pinch-hit double in the ninth inning Saturday.
"I'm also optimistic that he'll get himself into the full swing and have more impact throughout the course of the year," Price said. "But I just felt we needed to give some other guys some opportunity to go out there and perform."
Schumaker sees room for improvement
PHOENIX -- Reds outfielder/infielder Skip Schumaker had two hits and two runs scored when he started in left field Saturday, and a 1-for-4 game in Friday's start. He's hit safely in 12 of his last 13 starts.
Schumaker, who started Sunday in center field in place of Billy Hamilton, wasn't overly thrilled with his hitting performance since coming off of the disabled list on May 3.
"It's getting there," said Schumaker, who dislocated his left shoulder on March 21 at Spring Training. "I don't think anybody in this clubhouse, except Mes [Devin Mesoraco], is happy with where we are offensively. Grinding out at-bats is what I take pride in, so hopefully I can keep doing that. I feel like the hits will come. Collectively, we're all trying to get where we should be. Hopefully, it's real soon."
Hamilton was a late scratch Sunday with right elbow soreness.
Holmberg has had injury-plagued Triple-A season
PHOENIX -- It's been a rough 2014 season for Triple-A Louisville left-handed pitcher David Holmberg, who was acquired in a November three-way trade from the D-backs that sent catcher Ryan Hanigan to the Rays.
First, Holmberg missed time in Spring Training when he was struck during a drill and suffered a lower leg infection. During the regular season, he's been on the disabled list twice with left shoulder injuries.
In his five starts for Louisville, the 22-year-old Holmberg is 0-4 with 10.50 ERA, nine walks and 13 strikeouts in 18 innings.
"We haven't seen the best of David yet but we've certainly seen it on video and in Arizona," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "[Pitching coach] Jeff Pico was fully encouraged he's going to be an impact guy here for us at some point."