Bailey grinds out second rehab start

Reds righty throws 78 pitches in 4 innings, works through 5 errors behind him

Bailey grinds out second rehab start

NEW YORK -- The second rehab start for Reds pitcher Homer Bailey was not routine and he did not reach his desired innings total. However, that was less about him and more about circumstances out of his control.

On Tuesday for Double-A Pensacola vs. Jackson, Bailey threw 78 pitches over four innings, allowing five runs (one earned) on six hits and two walks. He struck out three and hit a batter. Not helping him was Pensacola's defense, which committed five errors.

"Obviously, there were some obstacles I had to overcome," Bailey told the Pensacola News Journal. "Those longer innings like that where things aren't going your way ... it was good going through it just to have those extended innings and physically testing yourself where those long innings won't hurt you.

"You're sometimes going to have days like that. That's baseball. I wish it could've happened tomorrow, that would've been great. But it was actually a good test for me."

Reds reports viewed by manager Bryan Price, he said, showed that Bailey's velocity, arm strength and command were good. Those are positive signs for the right-hander as he has nearly completed his comeback efforts from the Tommy John surgery he had on May 8, 2015.

Bailey is next scheduled to start on Sunday for Triple-A Louisville, the location of his first rehab outing where he threw 67 pitches over 3 2/3 innings on Thursday. Sunday's start is expected to be his final tuneup before Bailey is activated -- barring a setback. He is considering asking the club for an extra day before making the rehab start due to travel fatigue. Last week, he departed Goodyear for Cincinnati, went to Louisville, returned to Cincinnati and then headed to Pensacola before another return to Cincinnati.

"There may be a time where I ask for an extra day, not necessarily because of my elbow's health, but for some of the traveling I've been doing," Bailey told the newspaper. "I may have to get an extra day just to get that routine back."

Price didn't think giving Bailey a little more time would be an issue.

"We always listen to our players in that regard," Price said. "You try to find the best place, the best weather, the least amount of travel, sometimes to put the competition in there. Do we want to see him against Triple-A hitters, Double-A hitters?

"It's hard to stay on a routine. It's a lot easier if you're in Goodyear and you're always pitching in Arizona. These times, sometimes they have to come in, play their catch at 9 in the morning, catch a noon flight to the next city. It's not convenient. We try to do the best we can with the travel, but it's not easy."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.