Storen, Schebler join Reds Caravan

Organization will cover 5 states over 17 stops this weekend

Storen, Schebler join Reds Caravan

CINCINNATI -- Four buses were lined up outside of the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum on early Thursday morning, and that can only mean one thing in the winter: It's the starting point of another Reds Caravan.

Reds reliever Drew Storen, who signed a one-year, $3 million contract on Jan. 3, was excited to get rolling with his new team. Storen is on the east leg of the four-day road trip.

"Spring Training is always different with a new team. You're the new kid at school," Storen explained. "Obviously knowing Tucker [Barnhart], that helps. But I am getting to meet some people now and spend time with them before spring. It will be a little bit of a head start for me."

Storen and Barnhart, the Reds' catcher, both hail from Brownsburg, Ind., near Indianapolis. Storen was a Reds fan as a kid.

"I'm getting the feel of it from the other side of things. It's pretty cool," Storen said. "I grew up coming to games in Cincinnati. Being able to play here is going to be a lot of fun."

The four buses spread out on the roads, set to cover the region with a combined 17 stops. They will reach five different states -- Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, West Virginia and Tennessee -- totaling around 3,300 miles. Reds radio icon Marty Brennaman and president/CEO Bob Castellini hosted the trip's launch.

There are stops planned at Reds-affiliated radio stations, plus a few malls, universities, children's hospitals and the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

All of the public caravan fan stops are free. There will be Q&A sessions and opportunities for autographs.

Reds outfielder Scott Schebler is on the northern leg of the caravan. Schebler, acquired from the Dodgers in a trade last offseason, is also experiencing the trip for the first time after playing his first season in Cincinnati in 2016.

"It seems like our schedules are pretty full," Schebler said. "I'm excited to go out and see the fans. It seems like it will be a fun weekend. I'm really looking forward to the Air Force Museum in Dayton. I've heard it's great."

All four caravan legs will converge for a final stop at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday at Florence Mall in Florence, Ky.

For complete information and the itinerary for the 2017 Reds Caravan, visit reds.com/caravan.

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.