While Trent sleeps on the West Coast or travels to San Diego or does whatever he does while nobody is looking, I'm at Louisville Slugger Field to take in the final game of the Bats' homestand as they face the Syracuse Chiefs.
Really, I'm here for three stories: Edwin Encarnacion, Gary Majewski and Homer Bailey. It was an 11:05 a.m. start, because they have these education days where they load the stands with students on field trips (man, when I was in school, I would have loved to take a field trip to the ballpark), so I got here early to talk to some people.
Grabbed Majewski, and he seemed OK considering the year he's had (his sister dying recently, injuries in spring training). I asked him if he was looking forward to playing for the Reds as a healthy pitcher, and he had an interesting quote that I'll share.
"If I go up there and do half of what I did (in 2005 when he was with Washington), then I'd be happy ... and shove it up everybody's ass."
That last part kind of came out of nowhere, but you've gotta love Majewski.
Also talked to Encarnacion, and he said he was just working hard and trying to stay positive. My man, C.L. Brown of the Louisville Courier-Journal, told me Encarnacion made two errors in yesterday's game (one throwing, one fielding), so that's not good. But Encarnacion also said he'd been sent down to work on his swing, not necessarily on his defense. Bats manager Rick Sweet, though, said that Encarnacion's defense needed to improve as well.
Unfortunately for me, Encarnacion did not start today.
Haven't talked to Homer yet, so I'll try to get him and Chad Moeller after the game.
Blast from the past: Ray Olmedo is playing shortstop today for the Chiefs.
UPDATE (2:38 p.m.): I talked to Homer and asked him if he thought staying in Class AAA and continuing with the seasoning process was a good thing for him, or if he was anxious to come up to the big leagues.
ďI havenít even thought about it," Bailey said. "The best thing I can do every time I step out here is to try to get better every day. I have to put my trust in Wayne and Jerry. When the move is made, itís going to be the right move. They definitely know what they're doing, and they understand how everything is going. I donít think theyíre in any panic to rush anything. Iím as excited to get there as anybody else to see how I compete with those kind of players."
Also talked to Chad Moeller - who had a big two-home run day - and he agreed. Bailey has the stuff, he said, but he needs more work in becoming a major-league ready pitcher.
By the way, I enjoy a good, hearty handshake as much as the next guy - and I pride myself on my own strong grip - but damn, with Homer, it feels like he's trying to squeeze the blood out of your hands. It's like you're hanging off a cliff, and he's damn sure not going to let go. Interesting. Not sure if that's a good thing or not. I guess it's better than the limp-handshake thing.