Bailey scuffling at Triple-A Louisville
Right-hander having tough time over last three starts in Minors
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
SAN DIEGO -- If the Reds ever need rotation help, prospect Homer Bailey's name would likely be part of the conversation. But at the moment, Bailey isn't even near being Triple-A Louisville's best starter.
The numbers from Bailey's last three starts aren't pretty. In 14 1/3 innings, he's 0-1 with a 9.42 ERA, 21 hits allowed, 13 walks and 11 strikeouts.
"I know he's been struggling with his command with the last two starts," Reds player development director Terry Reynolds said on Friday. "Too many balls, too many deep counts. It's something he has to work through."
Bailey had a 2.71 ERA through his first seven starts. Overall, he's 4-4 with a 4.30 ERA.
In his most recent outing on Thursday at Toledo, Bailey worked five innings and gave up five earned runs, five hits and five walks in a no-decision. In the start before that, May 16 vs. Scranton-Wilkes Barre, the 22-year-old right-hander walked six in five innings for a loss.
Meanwhile, Justin Lehr has been solid for Louisville and is 4-2 with a 2.41 ERA in eight starts. Tom Shearn, who went 3-0 as a September callup last season, entered his 10th start on Friday with 6-1 record and a 4.14 ERA.
Lack of control or aggressiveness in the strike zone was a factor in Bailey's being sent down during Spring Training. He was a candidate for a big league rotation spot, but was beat out by Johnny Cueto and Edinson Volquez.
"At this point, it's one of the things mentally he has to get past," Reynolds said. "It's not one certain thing you can point a finger at. He's had streaks like this before where he nibbles around the plate and doesn't trust his stuff.
"He has to get back to where he believes that he has the ability to put pitches in the strike zone that will get hitters out. Like a hitter in a slump, he has to work his way out of it."