Cozart still dealing with Achilles soreness

Cozart still dealing with Achilles soreness

CINCINNATI -- The good news is that Reds shortstop Zack Cozart has gotten past the soreness in his surgically-repaired right knee that has kept him out lately. The bad news is that Cozart's other nagging injury, left Achilles tendon inflammation, still left him unable to play on Sunday.

Cozart entered the clubhouse in the morning wearing a walking boot, a preventative measure to protect the injury.

"It's to kind of let everything settle down," Cozart said.

Even though he was hurting on different legs, it's believed that knee injuries and Achilles injuries are somewhat related.

"The knee is great. I don't know if it's a compensating injury from over time," Cozart said. "If my knee was barking a little bit a month ago, I'm using my left side more. Then all of a sudden, my left side is overused and the Achilles pops up. I think we're just trying to knock out that little pain."

Cozart, who last played on Wednesday vs. the Marlins, is listed as day to day. He is batting .263 with a .755 OPS, a career-high tying 15 home runs and 46 RBIs.

Defensively, Cozart realized this week that he wasn't able to do what normally does on the field.

"Martin Prado hit a ball to my right that was five feet away and just couldn't even go after it," Cozart said. "I was trying to conserve because it hurt. That's when I talked to [manager] Bryan [Price] after the game and said, 'Look, it's not good.' It's one thing hitting. It doesn't feel great hitting, but I don't really care about hitting. But if I can't play defense, then I need to get this thing calmed down. I've done some pool work and stuff. I was supposed to wear a boot through today and see how it is. It's definitely going to be better because I'm resting it. It's nothing serious."

Cozart targeted a Tuesday return but Price seemed to think it might be longer. The Reds called up Jose Peraza from Triple-A Louisville on Saturday to play shortstop until Cozart is ready.

"[Cozart] is, like these other guys, get out of the boot, get on the field, work out and verify that he can go out there and do everything he needs to do without discomfort and then probably a day after that," Price said.

Worth noting

• During an 11-7 win for Louisville on Saturday, Reds prospect Robert Stephenson had a poor outing as he pitched two innings, with six runs, four hits, four walks and two strikeouts. He began the game by allowing a leadoff home run. It was the third time in his last five starts that Stephenson had given up at least six runs.

Stephenson, the Reds' No. 4 prospect according to MLBPipeline.com, is 6-9 with a 4.66 ERA in 22 starts for Louisville. He also made two starts for the Reds in April. Louisville manager Delino DeShields made some pointed comments after Saturday's game.

"Until he makes an adjustment, it's going to continue," DeShields told the Louisville Courier Journal. "It's not going to get better. It's on him. He's been told what he needs to do and what he needs to work on by numerous coaches and staff members. It's up to him to make those adjustments. If I was him, I'd be embarrassed."

Price said that he was not aware of DeShields comments.

"I think it's a consistency component that's missing from his season," Price said of Stephenson.

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. 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.