Friday, May 16, 2003
Guillen knew the score, Bowden says
By John Fay
The Cincinnati Enquirer
ST. LOUIS - Jose Guillen's trade demand is falling upon deaf ears in the Reds' front office.
"Before we signed Jose we had a conference call with Jose and his agent, Adam Katz," Reds general manager Jim Bowden said. "We told him that Adam Dunn was the left fielder, Austin Kearns was the right fielder and Ken Griffey Jr. was the center fielder. He would be the fourth outfielder. He agreed and said it was a good fit for him."
That hasn't changed.
"We expect Jose to fulfill his obligation to us," Bowden said.
Guillen says he was misled; Bowden says the Reds have been up front with him from the start.
Guillen started Thursday's game. He was upset Wednesday when he was not in the lineup. Guillen says he was told Griffey would be eased back into the lineup.
"I'm not stupid," Guillen said. "I know Dunn and Kearns have 13 home runs and over 20 RBI. Griffey is a superstar. Those guys are going to play every day.
"It's not a good situation for me. They should trade me."
Guillen remains an unhappy camper - even with Thursday's start.
"I'll probably get three hits and be out the next day," Guillen said.
Guillen was 2-for-4 Thursday.
BRANYAN UPDATE: Bowden said Russell Branyan either will continue to rehab with the Reds or go to Sarasota, Fla., to do it.
"The commissioner's office denied our request for another 20-game rehab assignment at (Triple-A) Louisville," Bowden said.
Branyan is still working to get his throwing arm in shape after October shoulder surgery.
MAYBE TODAY: Barry Larkin pinch hit Thursday and walked in the ninth. Larkin hopes his left calf feels good enough to play today in Milwaukee.
"Hopefully," Larkin said. "We'll see if I can do what I need to be able to do."
MATEO TO LOUISVLLE: Ruben Mateo cleared waivers and was outrighted to Louisville.
The Reds designated Mateo for assignment Tuesday to make room for Griffey on the roster.
Mateo must accept the assignment to Louisville. He hit .200 in more than 50 at-bats for the Reds. He had one home run and four RBI.
MEETING KEY: Three things happened at about the same time for the Reds. They had the major roster shakeup in Puerto Rico. They started getting better starting pitching. And they had the obligatory team meeting.
They've gone from 5-13 to 21-20 since those things happened, a 16-7 record.
Which was biggest of the three?
"I think it was the meeting," Sean Casey said.
The meeting - called by Scott Sullivan - was short but intense.
"We've had a different attitude since," Casey said. "Guys spoke their mind. We wanted to get everyone on the same page."
"After 20 games, we were as bad as you can be," Aaron Boone said. "We got together in the meeting and let it fly."
The roster moves didn't hurt either.
"Guys realized that no one's job was safe," Casey said.
CLIMBING THE CHARTS: At one time the Reds were last in hitting, fielding and pitching in the National League.
They pulled out of last in hitting about two weeks ago. Thursday, they moved out of the cellar in pitching as well.
Danny Graves' shutout Wednesday dropped the team ERA to 5.50, just ahead of Colorado, which is at 5.56.
The Reds are also no longer on pace to set a major-league record for strikeouts. Through 41 games, the Reds have fanned 340 times. That puts them on pace to strike out 1,343 times. The 2001 Milwaukee Brewers hold the record with 1,399.
GOLD GLOVES: The Reds are moving up in fielding percentage as well. Thursday's game was the third straight in which they didn't commit an error. That's the longest streak of the year.