Reds manager Dusty Baker has seen second baseman Brandon Phillips make hundreds of spectacular plays, so when Phillips dove to spear a line drive Friday night at Great American Ball Park and then nonchalantly flipped the ball to second for a double play, he wasn’t surprised.
Center fielder Shin-Soo Choo, a new Red, was amazed, however.
“I walked by Choo, and he’s like, ‘Wow,’” Baker said before Saturday’s game against the Nationals. “I said, ‘Get used to it, son.’”
The Reds made just two errors in the first four games. Fourteen of the 30 teams in Major League Baseball made two or fewer errors in their first four games.
Joey Votto nearly had an error in Friday’s 15-0 win over the Nationals, but after bobbling the groundball, he flipped it backward to first for the final out of the third inning.
“That’s what we expect,” Baker said. “We work hard on defense. It’s the same thing I’ve been saying since I’ve been here. Defense is work. Hitting’s fine, but defense is work. You don’t win games on defense, but you can lose them by giving away extra outs.”