Cubs at Reds game postponed after long rain delay
CINCINNATI (AP) The Reds' day for honoring their latest World Series champions got rained out.
Steady rain prompted the Reds to postpone their game against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday, disappointing a big crowd that had bought tickets to see a reunion of Cincinnati's 1990 championship team.
The teams waited 4 hours, 13 minutes before it was called off. No makeup was scheduled.
The teams were given three starting times, and each one got pushed back as the rain returned unexpectedly. Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani twice began to loosen up and had to back off.
''It looked like we were going to get to play at 1:30, then at 2:30,'' Reds manager Bryan Price said. ''We thought we were going to play at 4:35, but by the time we got out there and got the pitchers stretched out, it was still raining.
''We didn't have a desire to keep the players or the fans here for four hours.''
Four of the Reds' eight home games have been affected by rain, with the delays totaling 8 hours, 36 minutes. They've also had three extra-inning games at home, including a 7-3 loss to the Cubs in 11 innings on Friday night.
It was Chicago's second postponement of the season. A game against St. Louis on April 7 was called off and hasn't been rescheduled.
The Reds honored their `90 championship team with various activities over the weekend. They had planned to bring the players on the field before Saturday's game, but instead introduced them on the videoboard from a sheltered area of Great American Ball Park.
The Reds also gave away a Nasty Boys bobblehead featuring figures of relievers Norm Charlton, Rob Dibble and Randy Myers from the `90 club.
The rainout was a welcomed chance for Chicago to rest its bullpen. Cubs starters have thrown only 92 innings, the fourth-fewest in the NL.
By contrast, the Reds have gotten good showings from their rotation, only to have the bullpen give up games. Their relievers have a combined 5.36 ERA, worst in the NL.
The bullpen was a huge problem last season as well, going 1-17 after the All-Star break. The Reds brought in Burke Badenhop and Kevin Gregg to try to fix the problem, but both have struggled.
Badenhop gave up four runs in the 11th inning on Friday night, leaving him 0-1 with a 10.80 ERA. Gregg is 0-2 with a 10.29 ERA.
Price said Saturday that he will use Tony Cingrani more frequently to try to stabilize the bullpen. The left-hander was moved into the bullpen during spring training as a long reliever and has appeared in only three games.
''We're not getting the performance we expected to start the season from some of the other guys,'' Price said. ''It's his opportunity at this time.''
DON'T SAY IT
Price was asked to describe catcher Brayan Pena, and used the opportunity to poke fun at himself. Price used a vulgarity 77 times during a tirade against the media on Monday, and later apologized for his choice of words.
''Here's another overused word here - other than the f-word - it's perspective,'' Price said, referring to Pena's approach to his job.
Reds right fielder Jay Bruce was out of the starting lineup for the first time this season and likely will be off on Sunday, too. Bruce fouled out with the bases loaded in the 10th inning on Friday night and is batting only .164 with a team-high 24 strikeouts.
Cubs: Reliever Pedro Strop was still bothered by a sore toe, leaving him unavailable to pitch even if the game was played.
Reds: Devin Mesoraco won't catch in the bullpen until at least early next week, giving his sore left hip more time to heal. He's been limited to two pinch-hit appearances in the last 11 games.
Cubs: Jake Arrieta - Saturday's scheduled starter - didn't throw a warm-up pitch and will start on Sunday.
Reds: DeSclafani takes his 15-inning scoreless streak into Sunday's game.
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