06 Feb

in the mix

The Cincinnati Reds, coming off a terrible season, beefed up their rotation by trading for three veteran pitchers in the off-season. What that means for Cody Reed is that cracking the starting corps this spring will be a lot tougher. The former Northwest Mississippi Community College star from Horn Lake will be in the mix based on his relatively strong finish in 2018. Reed, a 25-year-old lefty, posted a 3.99 ERA with 31 strikeouts in 29 1/3 innings over his last seven appearances, six of them as a starter, which is the role he has said he wants. After back-to-back scoreless starts, his final game of the season didn’t go so well (a loss to Kansas City), but he ended the year with a 3.98 ERA in 17 games. “It’s a tough one to end on if this is it,” Reed told mlb.com after that final outing. “I definitely feel like I (left a good impression). I’m going to come into spring fighting … .” Reed was a second-round pick out of NWCC by Kansas City in 2013 and was a highly rated prospect when traded to the Reds while in Double-A in 2015. He made the big leagues in 2016 but endured a rough baptism, going 0-7 with a 7.36 ERA. Reed has bounced between Triple-A and the big club the last two seasons, working as both a starter and reliever. Maybe he sticks in 2019. Reds pitchers and catchers report for work, officially, on Feb. 13.

16 Sep

looking ahead in cincy

As the Cincinnati Reds look ahead to 2019, they’re surely giving strong consideration to making Cody Reed a part of their starting rotation. The ex-Northwest Mississippi Community College standout from Horn Lake showed his potential on Saturday against the Chicago Cubs. Going head-to-head with Cubs ace Jon Lester, Reed threw five scoreless innings, yielding just two hits and striking out 10. Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart told mlb.com that it was the best he’d ever seen Reed throw and could be a “springboard outing” for the 25-year-old left-hander. Reed got a no-decision — the Reds ultimately lost 1-0 to the first-place Cubs — but trimmed his ERA to 4.32 in his 15th appearance and fifth start this season. He was recalled from Triple-A Louisville in mid-August and given a spot in the rotation shortly thereafter. In 16 career starts spread over three seasons, Reed is still looking for his first win. His lone MLB victory came as a reliever. Based on Saturday’s performance, that breakthrough W could be coming soon. P.S. Four Mississippians earned spots on Baseball America’s Classification All-Star teams, one at each of the top four levels of the minors. Mississippi State alum Dakota Hudson, now pitching in the big leagues with St. Louis, made the Triple-A team; former Bulldogs star Nathaniel (Nate) Lowe (in Tampa Bay’s system) is the first baseman on the Double-A team; MSU product Reid Humphreys (Colorado) is the closer on the high Class A team; and ex-Ole Miss standout David Parkinson (Philadelphia) made the low-A team as a starter. Lowe, named to the all-classification All-Stars second team after batting .330 with 27 homers and 102 RBIs across three levels, is on the Triple-A Durham team that just won the International League pennant. Mississippi Braves 2018 alums Touki Toussaint and Ian Anderson, both hurlers, were chosen as first-team all-classification All-Stars by BA.

25 Aug

what’s in a name

Give it up for “Bull” and “TA7” for their contributions in winning efforts on the official opening night of Players Weekend in MLB. “Fraz” had three hits Friday in a losing cause. “CC” got rocked and took a loss. “Bone” had a quiet night, and “C-Dizzle” struck out in a pinch-hit appearance. “2-Bags” sat, resting a sore knee, and “Juicy J” and “Zoombiya” are, unfortunately, on the DL. Easy to overlook was the performance by “Goggles,” who escaped a major jam to keep his club in a game it would go on to lose. “Goggles” is the nickname worn by Cody Reed, the former Northwest Mississippi Community College star from Horn Lake. Working in relief for Cincinnati, the bespectacled Reed — can’t miss those thick, black rims — came on in the sixth inning with the bases loaded and one out in a 1-1 game vs. Chicago at Wrigley Field. The left-hander got Anthony Rizzo to bounce into a 1-2-3 double play on a 3-2 pitch. Reed then pitched a scoreless seventh, but the Cubs would ultimately win the game 3-2 on a David Bote walk-off homer. Reed, recently recalled from the minors, has now made three straight scoreless appearances for the Reds, cutting his season ERA to 3.95. He was a starter in Triple-A; maybe the Reds will finally give him another shot in their rotation. Nickname key: Bull is Brian Dozier, TA7 Tim Anderson, Fraz Adam Frazier, CC Cody Carroll, Bone Billy Hamilton, C-Dizzle Corey Dickerson, 2-Bags Mitch Moreland, Juicy J JaCoby Jones and Zoombiya Jarrod Dyson. (Tony Sipp, who notched a hold for Houston, is “Sipp,” in case anyone was confused.)

30 Jun

oops …

Cody Reed was making strides in his quest to get back to the big leagues, winning two straight starts in impressive fashion at Triple-A Louisville. Then came Friday night’s outing at Toledo and a stumble. Reed, the former Northwest Mississippi Community College standout from Horn Lake, got knocked around for 10 hits and eight runs in seven innings. His record dipped to 2-6 and his ERA rose to 4.57 in 12 starts for Cincinnati’s International League affiliate. Reed had a good spring with the Reds and opened this season in the big leagues but appeared in just four games (5.40 ERA) before being sent down. After a decent start at Louisville, the 25-year-old lefty went through a rough patch where he lost five of six outings before the back-to-back wins that preceded Friday’s defeat. Reed was a second-round pick out of Northwest CC in 2013 by Kansas City and was a highly rated prospect when the Royals traded him to the Reds in mid-2015. He made The Show in 2016, going 0-7, 7.36 ERA for a bad team. He got his first and only MLB W last year. You know he is hungry for another. P.S. Ole Miss product and onetime big leaguer Alex Presley was released from a minor league club for the second time this season. He had been playing at Triple-A Charlotte (batting .198) in the Chicago White Sox’s system following a stint with Baltimore’s Triple-A club. Presley, 32, has a .263 career average over eight MLB campaigns.

25 Feb

spring things

Cody Reed had gotten rave reviews from Cincinnati manager Bryan Price during workouts in Arizona, but his first appearance in a spring training game was a dud. The ex-Northwest Mississippi Community College star from Horn Lake was touched for five hits and four runs in two innings against Colorado on Saturday. Nolan Arenado took Reed deep. The 6-foot-5 left-hander is competing for a spot in the Reds’ bullpen, though he says he would prefer to start. He has a 3.63 ERA in the minors working primarily as a starter. A second-round pick by Kansas City in 2013, Reed moved to the Reds in a 2015 trade and went 6-2 with a 2.17 ERA for Pensacola in the Double-A Southern League. He made the big leagues as a highly rated prospect in 2016 but hasn’t fulfilled his promise in The Show, posting a 1-8 record and 6.75 ERA. He’s better than that. P.S. Mississippi State product Jonathan Holder notched a save on Saturday with a scoreless inning for the New York Yankees against Pittsburgh, and ex-State star Chris Stratton worked two scoreless (though not exactly clean) innings in a start for San Francisco against the Los Angeles Dodgers. … Ole Miss alum Alex Presley, in his Baltimore debut, went 1-for-3 with a walk against Philadelphia. … Former Pillow Academy standout Louis Coleman has signed a minor league deal with Detroit. The veteran right-hander last pitched in the majors in 2016 and spent last year in Triple-A with Cincinnati and Arizona. … The honor of being the first Mississippi product to homer in spring training went to Tim Anderson, the ex-East Central Community College star who went deep for the Chicago White Sox on Friday against the Dodgers. … Itawamba CC alum Tim Dillard, on assignment from minor league camp, pitched a scoreless inning for Milwaukee on Friday. The veteran right-hander has been in pro ball since 2002.

09 Aug

cruel world

Mississippi State product Mitch Moreland had a game-winning hit, and fellow ex-Bulldogs star Kendall Graveman threw seven strong innings to notch his eighth victory. But the big story – the best story – involving a Mississippian in the majors on Monday night was Cody Reed earning his long-awaited first … uh, well, no, it didn’t happen. Should have, but didn’t. The Northwest Mississippi Community College alum from Horn Lake, who entered Monday’s game at St. Louis with an 0-6 record (7.30 ERA) in eight starts, pitched six shutout innings, his first scoreless outing in the bigs. Thanks in large part to a triple by former Ole Miss star Zack Cozart, Cincinnati took a 4-0 lead into the ninth. Then, disaster. The Cardinals scored five times against the Reds’ bullpen, the game-winner crossing courtesy of a hit batsman with the bases loaded. Reed, a highly rated prospect, was 6-3 with a 3.20 ERA in Triple-A this year. He was 6-2, 2.17 for Pensacola in the Double-A Southern League in 2015. He was sharp on Monday night: four hits, one walk, four strikeouts. He should have been celebrating that first win, but nothing comes easy in the big leagues. The tall left-hander tried to put a good spin on it post-game. “It helps the confidence going into the next one,” he told The Associated Press. Does it?

18 Jun

listen up

Listened to Cody Reed’s MLB debut on XM; there is such an old-fashioned comfort in listening to baseball on the radio. … Among the five batters the former Horn Lake High and Northwest Mississippi Community College standout faced in the first inning were George Springer, Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and Carlos Gomez. At Minute Maid Park in Houston. Welcome to The Show, indeed. … None of those four got a hit, but Marwin Gonzalez, the second batter in the Astros’ lineup, hit a home run to put Reed and Cincinnati in an early 2-0 hole. … The Houston broadcasters discussed Reed’s lucky glasses – the ones he has worn since 10th grade – and marveled at the action on his slider. “A lot to like” and “flashing brilliance” were among the comments during the game. … The Reds battled back against Dallas Keuchel, the 2015 American League Cy Young Award winner. Ex-Taylorsville High star Billy Hamilton, who made what was described as a sensational catch in center field in the second inning, drove in a run in the fifth on a ground out. … Ole Miss product Zack Cozart made it 2-2 with his 10th homer of the season in the sixth. … It was still knotted at 2-all in the bottom of the seventh when Evan Gattis, the former Mississippi Braves slugger, crushed a Reed fastball for a two-run bomb. … Reed finished the seventh and was done for the day. The left-hander fanned nine, walked three and yielded just six hits. He was on the hook for the loss before Adam Duvall hit a game-tying homer in the ninth. Still – from the sound of things – Reed proved he is ready for the big leagues.

16 Jun

debut alert

Cody Reed, the bespectacled left-hander out of Northwest Mississippi Community College, will make his big league debut for Cincinnati at Houston on Saturday, according to multiple reports. Reed, from Horn Lake, is 6-3 with a 3.20 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 64 2/3 innings at Triple-A Louisville this year. He was 6-2, 2.17 at Double-A Pensacola in the Southern League in 2015 after the Reds acquired him from Kansas City in the Johnny Cueto deal. The Royals drafted Reed in the second round out of NWCC in 2013. The 6-foot-5, 225-pound Reed, one of the Reds’ top-rated prospects, almost made the big club out of spring training. He’ll join Chad Girodo, Chris Stratton and Tim Anderson as Mississippians making their MLB debut this season.

21 Mar

watch for it

Cody Reed, the former Horn Lake High and Northwest Mississippi Community College standout, will get the start tonight for Cincinnati against San Diego in a Cactus League game to be televised live (9:10 p.m.) on MLB Network. Left-hander Reed, one of the Reds’ top prospects, has a 1.13 ERA in eight innings this spring as he bids to crack their rotation. Even if he doesn’t make the club out of spring training, it’s expected the 22-year-old will make his big league debut sometime this season. The bespectacled Reed – he has worn the black-rimmed glasses on the mound since high school – went 6-2 with a 2.17 ERA in eight starts for Double-A Pensacola in 2015 after the Reds got him from Kansas City in the Johnny Cueto trade. P.S. Corey Dickerson, from McComb and Meridian CC, and ex-Itawamba CC star Desmond Jennings are with the Tampa Bay Rays on their historic trip to Cuba. The Rays will play the Cuban national team on Tuesday at 1 p.m. on ESPN, the first time since the Baltimore Orioles played an exhibition vs. Cuba in 1999 that an MLB team is taking the field there.

26 Jul

trade winds

Cody Reed made one big move this season when he rose from A-ball to Double-A. Now he’s making another, this one from the Kansas City system to Cincinnati’s. Reed, a left-hander from Horn Lake, was one of the three pitchers the Royals sent to the Reds in their trade today for ace right-hander Johnny Cueto. The main piece for the Reds is Brandon Finnegan, a hard-throwing lefty who made a name for himself in the 2014 postseason. But Reed may prove to be much more than a throw-in. The 6-foot-5, 220-pounder, a second-round draft pick in 2013 out of Northwest Mississippi Community College, is in the midst of a strong season. He went 5-5 with a save and a 2.14 ERA in 13 appearances at Class A Wilmington and earned a promotion to Double-A Northwest Arkansas, where he was 2-2, 3.45 in five starts. Reed may well land in Pensacola in the Southern League.