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Reds pitcher Michael Lorenzen may get bigger role as hitter, outfielder

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Posted at 3:03 PM, Feb 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-22 15:32:27-05

GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Michael Lorenzen is about to get his wish.

The right-hander already has a job with the Reds as a setup man in the bullpen and an occasional starter. He's been strong and dependable.

But Lorenzen, a pitcher-outfielder in college, has been vocal in saying he wants to do more. That's why he was in the batting cages on Thursday taking swings on a rainy day in Goodyear.

Lorenzen has been lobbying for an expanded role, and new manager David Bell revealed that several coaches have worked out a detailed plan with Lorenzen that allows him to get in some hitting and outfield work.

Bell said don't be surprised if you see Lorenzen pitch this spring and then stay in the game as a centerfielder.

Lorenzen is grateful for the opportunity and the chance to share his input.

“Them being able to have me in there and sit down with them and give them my own personal feedback on how the plan should work, and just bounce some ideas off each other … We're in on this together,” Lorenzen said. “They believe in me and I believe in myself … we're excited to get this thing going.”

Lorenzen has proved to be a valuable bat in a limited role. He hit four homers in 31 at-bats last year, including a pinch-hit grand slam, and batted .290 with 10 RBI.

He feels he earned the right to lobby for more.

“If you work hard enough, you earn certain things," Lorenzen said. "For me, if I didn't work as hard as I did, I wouldn't feel like I have the right to go out and say what I think I can do, but because I work the way I work, I feel I've earned that right.”