GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Dusty Baker managed Cesar Izturis in Chicago but the veteran shortstop was injured at the time. Now Baker gets to see what Izturis can really do.
Izturis boosted his chance to win a utility job with the Reds, hitting a sixth inning home run off Travis Webb and an eighth-inning RBI single against Johnny Hellweg in Cincinnati's 6-5 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday."I had Izturis when I was in Chicago," Baker said. "I know him but I want to see what he can do now."The 33-year old is a non-roster invitee who will have to play his way onto the team.Logan Schafer drove in two runs with a single and a double and Donnie Murphy hit three hits, including a double.Schafer, a third-round pick by the Brewers in the 2008 amateur draft, is a candidate to make an opening-day roster that will be missing Corey Hart and Mat Gamel. Murphy is also in the mix for a utility spot and the first-base job."Schafer always swings it," Ron Roenicke said. "He squares up balls. He gets it. He knows when to bunt and does all the little things that can help you. Murph is starting to swing the bat well. He scuffled early. Like I tell the guys, we're not too concerned about what happens early."Scheduled to pitch three innings, Homer Bailey allowed three runs -- one earned -- and four hits in two innings. The Reds auditioned second baseman Henry Rodriguez and shortstop Jason Donald, and they failed to turn two ground balls into double plays, leading to the unearned runs."Homer (Bailey) had a 30-pitch inning that first inning," Baker said. "We didn't want to give him another inning and took him out. He threw the ball real good. He just couldn't put them away. I think three of their hits were two-strike hits."The defense let Bailey down."We won but it's hard to win like that," Baker said. "We just have to tighten up our game."On a day with wet conditions, Reds manager Dusty Baker gave most of his regulars the day off.Milwaukee starter Wily Peralta allowed three runs and five hits in 2 1/3 innings."Wily was up and down in the zone again," Roenicke said.
Aramis Ramirez missed his sixth game with a strained left knee. He strained it sliding into second base last Saturday against the Angels. ... Burke Badenhop has retired 12 of the 13 batters he's faced this spring, striking out five. ... The Reds re-assigned RHP Justin Freeman and C Tucker Barnhart to minor league camp. ... The Reds scheduled a `B' game on Sunday against the Dodgers. Both teams had a game rained out on Friday. ... Mike Leake and Aroldis Chapman are competing for the fifth spot in the Reds' rotation. Their turn to pitch is Monday, an off day. They will pitch simulated games to stay on schedule. ... Neftali Soto had two hits to raise his average to .350, replacing Joey Votto, who is playing in the World Baseball Classic.