Ken Broo's Reds Spring Training Blog: 'Baseball crazy' outfielders and Billy Hamilton prepped

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -  Hello again from Goodyear, Arizona.....

Another fine day for baseball here in the desert.  But the monotony of camp is soon to set in.  There are only so many days of infield drills, pitchers fielding practice and batting practice anyone can handle, even intrepid television crews.....

Billy helps Billy bunt

We witnessed a very interesting bunting drill today, conducted by former Red and current Reds coach, Billy Hatcher. The pupil was Billy Hamilton, whom the Reds continue to school on the art of bunting and various other ways to reach first base.   Hamilton is the central figure in this camp. And it's clear that whatever fortunes the Reds may have this season will fall heavily on Hamilton. With spring games beginning next week, Hamilton will initially lead off. And depending on how that goes, the plan is for Hamilton to bat lead off when the games start to count.

A 'Shark' in the outfield?

I had a chance today to interview a candidate for one of the five outfield positions.  He would be Roger Bernadina, most recently with the Phillies but a guy who broke into the Majors with the Washington Natinonals.  He was born in Curacao but now lives in the Netherlands.  Curacao is baseball crazy, he tells me.  He didn't know former Red Didi Gregorius while in Curacao, but has gotten to know him a little bit since Gregorius jumped to the Majors.  Bernadina acquired the nickname "The Shark" while with the Nationals.  I mentioned to him that he shares a clubhouse with a Reds prospect was once attacked by a shark, pitcher Chad Rogers. 

"Really???" was Bernadina's reply.

That'd be the same take I'd expect for anyone who received that information.

By the way, we're speaking with Rogers later today on his harrowing experience of being attacked by a bull shark while surfing...

On deck for interviews today:  Jay Bruce, Homer Bailey and Billy Hamilton.  Make sure to watch 9 On Your Side tonight at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. with John Popovich for the latest on the Reds....

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