Thursday, July 31, 2003

Reds notebook: Closer duties to be shared

Reitsma, Heredia to get first shots

By Kevin Kelly
The Cincinnati Enquirer

By trading relief pitcher Scott Williamson to the Red Sox late Tuesday, the Reds are now employing a closer-by-committee approach.

Right-hander Chris Reitsma and left-hander Felix Heredia will get the first opportunity.

"We're probably not looking at the prototypical one-inning save either," manager Dave Miley said. "Both of those guys are capable of pitching two innings.

"We'll just have to see how it goes and hopefully it will fall into place. But I think those guys probably deserve the first opportunities to go there."

Heredia, who pitched two scoreless innings Wednesday, hasn't allowed a run in his past 12 outings.

Reitsma pitched a scoreless 10th for his eighth win. He is now 5-1 with a 1.78 ERA in his past 22 appearances.

HAVING A BALL: Miley thought his chances of securing the game ball from his first major-league win as a manager were dashed when Adam Dunn's game-winning single in the 10th rolled into right field.

But thanks to bench coach Mark Berry, who played for Miley in the minor leagues, the keepsake found its way to the Reds' manager.

"Evidently they put the ball by the tarp and (Berry) ran out there like I don't know what and got it for me," Miley said. "So obviously I'll keep that.

"It's an awesome feeling .  . I owe these (players) a lot."

OLMEDO OUT: Infielder Ray Olmedo, who made three errors Tuesday, was not in the starting lineup Wednesday.

Miley insisted that Olmedo's absence was not due to his play the night before.

"Barry (Larkin) is ready to go, and I want to get him in the lineup," Miley said.

Larkin, who had not started since July 23 because of a leg strain, was 1-for-4 with a walk.

ANOTHER SHOT: Released by the Mets in early May, pitcher John Bale joined the Reds bullpen Wednesday.

The left-hander was promoted from Triple-A Louisville after the Williamson trade. He went 4-2 with a 3.30 ERA and four saves in 26 appearances.

ROSTER MOVES: Because newly acquired pitchers Aaron Harang and Joe Valentine will be placed on the 40-man roster, Reds minor-league catcher Dane Sardinha was outrighted off the 40-man.

Sardinha was batting .219 with three homers and 19 RBI through 48 games at Double-A Chattanooga.

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