Fay and Hal must share notes. From this AM's Enquirer...
Coffey finding plenty to do; Narron trying to be careful not to overuse workhorse reliever
BY JOHN FAY | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER
DENVER - Give Reds manager Jerry Narron credit for honesty. When someone asked Narron if he were worried about overusing Todd Coffey, Narron shot back:
Going into Wednesday's game with the Colorado Rockies, Coffey led Reds relievers in appearances (14) and innings (17).
At that pace over a full season, Coffey would wind up pitching 102 innings over 84 games.
Coffey threw two innings and got the win in the 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals Tuesday.
"Since he pitched two innings - even though he stayed under 30 pitches - we're going to do everything we can to not use him (Wednesday)," Narron said.
Coffey is the kind of guy who is never going to turn down the ball.
"He feels good," Narron said. "He's a guy who wants to and feels like he can throw every day."
Pitching coach Tom Hume says the coaches don't always believe Coffey's self-assessments.
"I know when to say when," Hume said. "But he's one of those guys who can come back."
Coffey says that has been the case since he had Tommy John elbow surgery in 2000.
"Since then, my arm bounces back quick," he said.
But the most innings Coffey has ever thrown is 801/3. That was in Single-A Dayton in 2002 when he was going back and forth between starting and relieving.
Coffey has been effective. He went into Wednesday 2-0 with a 0.53 ERA - second-lowest among National League relievers. Only two of the eight runners he had inherited had scored.
Narron admits he doesn't have a hard and fast formula for how much to use Coffey.
"I don't know what is the best thing to do," Narron said.
If he calls, Coffey will be there.
"I'm ready to go every day, wherever they need me," he said.
GRIFFEY UPDATE: Narron didn't have anything new on Ken Griffey Jr.
But he hinted that the weather here - it was in the high 40s with a chance of rain - kept Griffey from being activated for this two-game series. Narron said the Reds knew the forecast.
"Yes sir, we did," he said. "I know Griff did."
The Reds go from here to Arizona, where the games are played indoors.
Griffey will be activated when he tells the Reds he's ready. Narron doesn't think the way the club is playing - winning 11 of 13 going into the Colorado series - is keeping Griffey from making that call.
"I don't think that has anything to do with it," Narron said. "He's a pretty good player. I hope that's not it."
ANOTHER CLUE: Chris Denorfia, brought up Tuesday to take the roster spot of the injured Cody Ross, offered another tea leaf into the Griffey situation.
"Jerry brought me in and said I could be here three days or I could be here the rest of the year," Denorfia said. "He told me to enjoy it. I am - getting some good food, having fun."
WILSON REPORT: Narron said the reports on Paul Wilson were good after his six-inning, two-run stint for Triple-A Louisville Tuesday.
Velocity remains a concern, however. Wilson is throwing in the 81, 82 mph range.
"I know his velocity isn't what everybody would like," Narron said. "But hopefully, that'll come."
Wilson, rehabilitating from shoulder surgery, is scheduled for three more starts for Louisville.
FARM REPORT: Dayton swept a doubleheader from Burlington 4-3 and 8-7 to get to 13-13.
Johnny Cueto won Game 1, going five innings, allowing two runs on five hits. Cueto, a 20-year-old right-hander, is 2-1 with a 3.24 ERA. He has allowed only 16 hits, struck out 33 and walked four in 25 innings.