It was a mismatch when the managers turned over their lineup cards to the home plate umpire Monday afternoon when the Cincinnati Reds traveled to Scottsdale to play the San Francisco Giants.
On Reds manager Bryan Price’s card there was one regular and it was Jose Peraza, playing shortstop instead of second base, where he will be on Opening Day.
Meanwhile, Giants manager Bruce Bochy had his Opening Day lineup on the field — Denard Span, Brandon Belt, Hunter Pence, Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford, Aaron Hill, Joe Panik, Madison Bumgarner and Hernandez.
IN YEARS PAST, WHAT Price did was a violation of an unwritten agreement. During spring training exhibition games a visiting team was expected to have at least four regulars in the lineup.
When the Reds trained in Sarasota, Fla., in 2000, the Minnesota Twins visited Ed Smith Stadium and manager Tom Kelly’s lineup card contained nine mystery men.
When it was mentioned to him that he was violating the commissioner’s edict about four regulars in the lineup, Kelly said, “If the commissioner can tell me who my starters are he can fill out my lineup card.”
Kelly was right. The Twins lost 93 games that year and finished last.
REDS STARTER CODY REED needed all the help he could get Monday because he didn’t help himself. He gave up 10 runs and 10 hits in 3 2/3 innings during a 14-2 loss.
He walked the first two batters he faced in he first inning, Denard Span and Brandon Belt, and both came around to score on singles by Brandon Crawford and Aaron Hill.
He hit Joe Panik with a pitch to start the second and walked pitcher Madison Bumgarner and Panik scored on a double by Gorkys Hernandez to put the Reds down, 3-0, after two innings.
IT DIDN’T GET ANY better for Reed in the fourth inning. He retired pitcher Bumgarner, but Hernandez doubled Span singled for a run, Belt singled and Pence doubled for two more runs and a 6-0 Giants lead.
And it didn’t end there. Reed walked Crawford and with two outs Hill doubled to push the count to 8-0.
And it didn’t end there, either. Jae-gyun Hwang, who had just entered the game at second base in the top of the fourth, drilled a two-run home run to make it 10-0.
And that’s where it ended for Reed and his miserable afternoon: 3 2/3 innings, 10 runs, 10 hits, four walks, no strikeouts and a home run, pushing his spring earned run average to 7.08.
WHAT IT ALL MEANS, mostly, is that there are only six days remaining before Opening Day and the Reds starting rotation is still a mystery beyond Scott Feldman and Brandon Finnegan.
AS ONE MIGHT EXPECT, Bumgarner toyed with the Reds’ lineup of minor leaguers — one base runner through four innings, a single by Sebastian Elizalde.
Elizalde became the Reds’ second base runner in the fifth when he led with a double, took third on a wild pitch and scored on Rob Brantly’s sacrifice fly. Stuart Turner then homered, cutting the deficit to 10-2.
Bumgarner pitched seven innings and gave up two runs, four hits, no walks, struck out nine, including Nick Senzel, Elizalde and Alex Blandino in his last inning.
RELIEF PITCHER MICHAEL Lorenzen put some semblance of order into the game by pitching a 1-2-3 fifth and facing only three batters (a walk and a double play) in the sixth.
Blake Wood took over in the seventh and struck out the first two, then gave up a double to Hernandez and a single to Span for another run and an 11-2 Giants lead. Wandy Peralta replaced Wood and got the final out on a line drive to first base.
The carnage, though, continued in the eighth inning against lefthanded bullpenner Tony Cingrani. He gave up three runs on two hits and two walks.
While the Reds gave up 13 runs and 15 hits, the accomplished only two runs and six hits offensively.
They lost three games over the last two days and gave up 43 runs in those three games.
Before the game, the Reds released Ryan Raburn, an infielder/outfielder they signed to a minor league contract on February 19.