Mesoraco gets a rest after big night
PHOENIX -- Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco was not in the lineup Saturday vs. the D-backs one night after hitting two home runs, including a grand slam, for a career-high five RBIs in a 6-4 win. Brayan Pena was behind the plate, as he usually is when ace Johnny Cueto pitches.
"It's hard to sit Devin, especially after he moved back to the seventh spot in the lineup and did some real damage for us down there," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "It doesn't mean that Brayan will catch every start for Johnny. But Johnny has been so good, I hate to disrupt it."
Mesoraco entered the night batting .355 with eight homers and 25 RBIs in 26 games despite two stints on the disabled list this season.
Price was asked if there was a way to play Mesoraco at a different position to get his legs rested while still keeping his bat in the lineup.
"Right now, he's catching four out of every five [games]," Price said. "You've got [Yadier] Molina and [Miguel] Montero over here and these guys might catch a month straight without a day off if you have enough [scheduled] days off in the month. I don't think it necessitates that at this point in time.
"There could be some benefit to it if he played some first base because that would allow him to stay in the lineup in this current situation. But if Joey [Votto] was healthy, it would be almost impossible to find a spot for Devin anywhere else. I don't see him as a corner outfielder or third baseman."
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Mesoraco joined Andy Seminick, Smoky Burgess, Johnny Bench and Javier Valentin as the only catchers in Reds history to hit two homers, including a grand slam, in one game.