CINCINNATI -- Devin Mesoraco and the Cincinnati Reds were hoping for encouraging news Tuesday when the 27-year old catcher underwent surgery to repair the labrum in his left shoulder. Instead, they got the worst-case scenario. Manager Bryan Price said Tuesday that Mesoraco has damage to both the posterior and anterior of the labrum, requiring a six-month recovery time thus ending Mesoraco's season. Again. The news broke before the Reds' scheduled game against the Pittsburgh Pirates was postponed due to rain. Coming off a 2014 campaign in which he became the first Reds catcher since Hall of Famer Johnny Bench to have 25 homers and 80 RBIs in a season, Mesoraco made only 23 appearances in 2015 before his season ended in June due to a hip impingement. "This isn't the way I drew it up," Mesoraco said Friday when the shoulder injury first was diagnosed. "It's frustrating. I worked so hard in the offseason to get ready to play." Mesoraco, who was selected by the Reds with the 15th overall pick in the first round of the 2007 draft, remains a key cog in the club's future plans despite essentially two lost seasons. He was batting .160 this season in 16 games. "Here's a kid who worked so hard to come back and then has a setback not related to the previous injury," Price said. "It's frustrating." Tucker Barnhart, who snapped a 270-game homerless drought Monday night, will get the bulk of the time behind the plate with Ramon Cabrera serving as his backup. Barnhart primarily is known for his defense, although the switch hitter worked hard last winter to refine his swing from the right side. He has hit safely in 13 of 20 games. Mesoraco's injury is yet another blow to the Reds' rebuilding process. The Reds (14-19) have eight players on the disabled list, including five projected starters. Cincinnati's patchwork rotation and overworked bullpen, which owns a 6.43 ERA through 33 games, got a breather when the Tuesday game was postponed after a 55-minute delay. It was the second rain delay this season at Great American Ball Park, where there were 18 delays totaling 26 hours and 57 minutes during the 2015 season, the highest total at home since the Reds started tracking weather delays in 1978. Right-hander Alfredo Simon will start Wednesday's series finale against the Pirates (17-15) and right-hander Juan Nicasio. There was no makeup date announced for the Tuesday game. The Pirates don't return to Great American Ball Park until September 16-18. "With the rain and the day off (Thursday), we may shuffle the rotation," Price said. "We'll have some clarity (Wednesday). We wanted to separate (left-handers John) Lamb and (Brandon) Finnegan. This could give us the opportunity to do that, and it gives the bullpen a day off." NOTES: Tuesday's postponement was only the 13th since Great American Ball Park opened in 2003. ... Before the game was rained out, David Freese was due to start at first base and bat leadoff for Pirates on Tuesday largely because of his past success against Reds RHP Alfredo Simon (4-for-12). ... A scoring change from May 4 game against the Cubs took an error away from Pirates CF Andrew McCutchen and awarded a hit to Anthony Rizzo, resulting in three earned runs charged to RHP Juan Nicasio. That raised Nicasio's ERA from 3.16 to 4.02.
Reds lose Mesoraco for season before rainout
The Sports Xchange | May 11