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OnBaseMachine
03-17-2006, 07:55 AM
WBC leaves Peņa rusty

BY JOHN FAY | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

SARASOTA, Fla. - Wily Mo Peņa is going to the World Baseball Classic semifinals with the Dominican Republic.

But that does not mean he'll be getting any at-bats.

Peņa has played in two of the Dominican's six games and has just six at-bats in the WBC so far.

That's not good for a player who is still developing.

"It's out of our hands," Reds hitting coach Chris Chambliss said. "But it's not the ideal situation."

Peņa, 24, had his development stunted in part by the structure of his contract. When he was 21, the Reds were forced to keep him in the big leagues or risk losing him. He has three full years in the majors but only 830 at-bats.

Peņa got three at-bats before he left to join the Dominican Republic team on March 3. He'll end up missing at least 17 days of spring training.

Reds manager Jerry Narron couldn't say how much the inactivity will hurt Peņa.

"I don't think it helps him, sitting and not playing," Narron said.

Peņa will be back in time for the Reds' final 12 spring games.

"That's the good part," Chambliss said. "When he returns, we'll get him as many at-bats as we can. Hitters are able to get ready faster than pitchers."

Peņa was penciled in as the Reds' starting left fielder. He has played that position less than the other outfield spots.

It no longer seems a given than Peņa will play every day. Adam Dunn started in left field Thursday and Rich Aurilia played first base.

Aurilia and Scott Hatteberg give the Reds right- and left-handed options at first base when Dunn plays left.

So Peņa's spring inactivity could cost him playing time, especially early in the season.

"We can't change it now," Chambliss said. "Obviously, it would be better if he was playing."

E-mail jfay@enquirer.com

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060317/SPT04/603170363/1071

OnBaseMachine
03-17-2006, 07:57 AM
Ridiculous if Narron benches Pena in favor of his boy Aurilia or Hatteberg or Womack just because Wily Mo chose to represent his country. It's not like he sit around and did nothing during the offseason; he played Winter Ball in the Dominican.

Dayton Red
03-17-2006, 08:44 AM
if he benches him it's because he can't make contact or play defense.

cumberlandreds
03-17-2006, 08:47 AM
Two weeks should be enough time for Pena to shake off any rustiness. He will be fine. At least he won't get any more than a splinter from sitting on the bench.

joeberk
03-17-2006, 10:35 AM
I don't know whether to be happy that agreed with me (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=904435&postcount=4) or not.

I want you guys to be right (and me wrong), trust me.

princeton
03-17-2006, 11:17 AM
"I don't think it helps him, sitting and not playing," Narron said.



agreed. Play him.

remdog
03-17-2006, 11:32 AM
As I said in the thread about Team USA losing in the tournament:

"Personally, I don't find it funny that Team USA bit the dust. OTOH, I'm not particularlly upset about it either.

My main focus is on THE CINCINNATI REDS and the sooner we get JR and WMP back in camp the better, as far as I'm concerned."

Rem

M2
03-17-2006, 12:11 PM
I swear, sometimes I get the feeling that there's no difference between baseball teams and one of those needly little ladies' church social groups. In both cases it's just a bunch of people with too much time on their hands, jawing about whoever isn't there at the moment.

Pena played winter ball. I think it's fair to assume he's doing something other than eating beans and rice while with the Dominican club. He has gotten into two games and no way would that happen if he were completely out of synch.

In general this strikes me as a bunch of grown men grousing over nothing.

oneupper
03-17-2006, 12:12 PM
This is whining, whining and more whining. Puleeze....get a grip. The consensus is that the WBC has been a success and good for the future of the game.

So what's this? Yeah...play it but don't use MY players? The Reds got off really well in terms of player usage anyway. WMP and Valentin rode the pine a bit (not that they're not used to it). How many ABs were they going to get in ST anyway? 10? 15? Both of them played winter ball. They're in much better shape than most.

JR got to face some REAL pitching instead of the watered down mix of frightened minor leaguer kids and washed up veterans fighting for a roster spot.
And none of our pitchers were used. There's a mixed blessing if you ask me.

Narron and Chambliss are already preparing their excuses for 2006. I can see it now...WMP and Valentin haven't hit because they didn't play in ST?
We have to play McCracken because WMP was late to ST?
Pathetic.

4256 Hits
03-17-2006, 10:38 PM
I swear, sometimes I get the feeling that there's no difference between baseball teams and one of those needly little ladies' church social groups. In both cases it's just a bunch of people with too much time on their hands, jawing about whoever isn't there at the moment.

Pena played winter ball. I think it's fair to assume he's doing something other than eating beans and rice while with the Dominican club. He has gotten into two games and no way would that happen if he were completely out of synch.

In general this strikes me as a bunch of grown men grousing over nothing.

Exactly; like 40 at bats in early spring training games is going to hurt his development. :confused: He is still taking batting practice and other baseball related activities even though he has played in only a couple games.

remdog
03-18-2006, 12:03 AM
JR got to face some REAL pitching instead of the watered down mix of frightened minor leaguer kids and washed up veterans fighting for a roster spot.

Yep. Canada and South Africa are a couple of 'Pitching Powerhouses'. :p:

Rem

remdog
03-18-2006, 12:22 AM
In general this strikes me as a bunch of grown men grousing over nothing.

In general this strikes me as a grown man grousing over nothing about grousing over nothing.

Rem