Baseball Notes: No Chipper; But Reds Get Leadoff Help; Astros In AL

Sports Columnist
The Voice-Tribune

If spring and baseball are among your favorite things, you have come to the right place.

All of the major league teams are now hard at work either in Florida or Arizona. It’s still early which means that most players will devote their mornings to baseball and their afternoons to golf.

Things you will have to get used to:

• Not seeing Chipper Jones in the Atlanta Braves lineup. It may be hard to get used to, but it’s a fact: Their All-Star third baseman has retired after 34 years. At least he and his manager, Bobby Cox, didn’t retire the same year. No more “Come on, Chipper!” from Bobby. No manager and player have ever been closer, unless it was Sparky Anderson and Pete Rose.

• It won’t be a mistake when you see that Houston is now in the American League. The Astros are now in the AL’s West, which is much too strong for Houston.

• Art Moreno, Mr. Money Bags from Mexico who owns the Los Angeles Angels, has opened the purse strings one more time. He added power-hitting Josh Hamilton to make the Angels even more potent. He joins Albert Pujols.

• The Cincinnati Reds, the closest team to us, once more are trying fireballer Aroldis Chapman in a starting role. If he can be persistent in hitting the strike zone, he could be the difference for the Reds. But Cincy promises even more. Hurt last year by lack of hitting from various leadoff men, the Reds acquired Shin-Soo Choo. He is a speedster who also will play centerfield.

As usual fans in Louisville will get to see a lot of Reds in Bats’ uniforms for short stays either to work out the kinks or to get well from injuries.