Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Bragg's defense gives him edge


Reds notebook

By John Fay
Enquirer staff writer

ST. LOUIS - When Darren Bragg signed with the Reds, he looked at it as an opportunity to get back to the big leagues.

Bragg was thinking his role would be as a bench player. But the way things have worked out, he's been playing nearly every day.

Bragg, making his fourth start in right field, went into Monday's game against the Cardinals 3-for-12 with the Reds with a home run.

"They've been giving me a chance," Bragg said. "That's what you want. It's a lot easier when you play every day."

Bragg took the roster spot of Ken Griffey Jr. when Griffey went on the 60-day disabled list Thursday.

Bragg is a better defensive option in right field than Jacob Cruz or John Vander Wal.

"Not to throw the other guys under the bus," Reds manager Dave Miley said. "But (Bragg) moves better out there."

The other option in right - Ryan Freel - is nursing a sore knee. Monday, Freel started at third base.

"It keeps Freel from having to run around in the outfield," Miley said.

Bragg started the year with the New York Yankees organization. He played 70 games with Triple-A Columbus before he was released July 2. The San Diego Padres signed him two days later. He played nine games with the Padres. He refused outright assignment to Triple-A Portland and elected free agency on July 20. The Reds signed him nine days later.

He played 13 games at Louisville before he got the call-up.

"I was ready to go," he said. "Anyone will tell you playing every day is what you play for. It's been nice."

GRIFFEY SURGERY: Ken Griffey Jr. underwent a two-hour procedure Monday to re-attach his torn right hamstring. Griffey will begin a four-month rehab program Thursday. He is expected to be ready for spring training. Medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek attached the tendon to the bone with three screws and cleaned up scar tissue around the injury.

MATTHEWS UPDATE: Left-hander Mike Matthews threw 25 pitches to a batter Monday.

"It went great," Matthews said. "Everything felt good."

Matthews, who had surgery on his elbow July 6, will do the same thing Friday in Arizona.

If all goes well, he'll begin a rehab assignment next week with Louisville.

Matthews was 2-1 with an 8.84 ERA before the surgery.

MOSS SIGNED: The Reds signed left-hander Damian Moss to a minor league contract and assigned him to Louisville.

Moss, 27, was once considered a top prospect. He was 12-6 with 3.42 ERA for Atlanta in 2002.

He was released on Aug. 14 by the Tampa Bay Devils Rays.

Moss began the year with the Rays. He was 0-1 with a 16.88 ERA. in five games. He was playing for Triple-A Durham at the time of his release. He was 5-9 with 5.87 ERA with the Bulls.

ARIZONA BOUND: The Reds have selected their participants in the Arizona Fall League.

They are: right-handers Dustin Moseley, Todd Coffey, Daylan Childress, infielder Kevin Howard, first baseman Jesse Gutierrez and catcher Brian Peterson.

KEARNS UPDATE: Austin Kearns was 1-for-4 with a two-run double in his return to his Louisville rehab.

FARM REPORT: Bobby Mosby hit his 14th home run for Billings in the Mustangs' 7-3 win over Missoula Sunday night.

Mosby, 21, was the 25th-round pick in the 2002 draft. He is hitting .280 with the 14 homers, good for the lead in the Pioneer League, with 44 RBI in 52 games.

---

E-mail jfay@enquirer.com

Reds statistics

(Not including Monday's game)

BATTERS AVGOBAABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOSBCSE
Casey .341.3964057713838218733424106
Larkin .308.35830254931537412534204
Freel .281.38336647103135121516322812
Dunn .279.40640880114220367582138415
Lopez .267.3331011627904131028008
Pena .263.31627035718121561786316
Jimenez .263.359411521081827446170966
Griffey .253.351300497618020604467101
LaRue .245.328294377215113412180028
Castro .243.27422625551712161037006
Cruz .235.3131151827503221033000
Valentin .219.2681511533715161026004
Larson .212.3041181325603141435105
Bragg .211.3181944101135000
Kearns .195.327871017213131630111
Vander Wal .162.18437262024114000
Romano .154.21426340013210000
Team Totals .255.3363989556101920617148529435921461980

PITCHERS WLERAGGSSVIPHRERHRBBSO
Graves 143.155903660.061262111836
Norton 134.35520051.252292542535
Riedling 434.37530059.263372953232
Harang 744.4919190108.11205554113987
Wilson 944.5423230142.21577672225192
Wagner 215.67330033.144252142021
Van Poppel 355.923010092.21066161161860
Acevedo 5106.3625230127.11549290244098
Claussen 136.9355024.226221951513
White 117.00250027.028212111422
Hancock 218.0483015.22316146710
Hudson 018.441105.1865013
Matthews 218.84220018.12319186108
Valentine 019.953106.1777274
Team Totals 56615.33117117371040.21169666616167388697




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