GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Starting the first game of spring training isn’t as big of a deal as starting, say, Opening Day.
But for Reds right-hander Jon Moscot, the start Tuesday in the Cactus League opener against the Cleveland Indians was kind of a big deal.
Moscot had not pitched in a game since he dislocated his left shoulder; it was during the rundown in Detroit, three outs into his June 15 start.
Moscow pitched well in Tuesday's 6-5 Redsa' victory. He went two innings and allowed one run on two hits. He struck out one and walked none.
“I felt really good,” he said. “The biggest thing for me is I felt comfortable with hitters in the box. I faced hitters in there one time since I got hurt. That was other day in batting practice.
“It was a good first outing overall.”
The mistake was Indian cleanup hitter, Carlos Santana: He hit it a long way for a home run to start the second inning.
“It was a change-up,” Moscot said. “I’ve got to get the arm speed back. I hung it a little bit.”
Moscot, 24, is competing for a spot in the rotation. The injury last year cost him some experience in the big leagues, and he was limited to two starts for the Reds before the injury.
But he went 7-1 with a 3.15 ERA in nine starts at Triple-A. He’s been on manager Bryan Price’s radar since the 2012 draft (he was picked in the fourth round).
Price says Moscot is as ready as anyone in the Reds system.
“I think it’s both a physical and mental maturity,” Price said. “He commands the strike zone with his stuff, and I think he has the emotional confidence to weather the challenges of transitioning to the big leagues.”