‘All sorts of babies’ joining Cincinnati Reds catching corps

The Cubs’ Javier Baez lies on the ground after scoring on a hard slide against Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco on Friday, April 22, 2016, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. David Jablonski/Staff
The Cubs’ Javier Baez lies on the ground after scoring on a hard slide against Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco on Friday, April 22, 2016, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. David Jablonski/Staff

The Reds catching corps will be spending the next few weeks hanging out in hospitals and changing diapers.

Devin Mesoraco’s wife, Kira, gave birth early Sunday to a son, Luke Devin, who arrived at 7 pounds, 3 ounces and 20.25 inches. The Reds placed Mesoraco on the three-day paternity list on Monday and recalled right-handed pitcher Austin Brice from Triple-A Louisville.

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On the way are Easton Michael Turner, son of Stuart and Danielle, and Tatum Elliott, son of Tucker and Sierra. Easton is due on Aug. 30, Turner said before Monday’s game against San Diego. Tatum is due on Sept. 1, Tucker said, adding that he’ll be induced on Aug. 31 if he hasn’t already arrived.

“I guess we all had the same idea around November or December of last year,” Barnhart said. “We’re all excited. … It seems to be a topic of conversation among the catchers.”

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“All sorts of babies,” manager Bryan Price mused. “I think we had the same thing a few years ago. I’m sure our non-roster catchers are all thrilled to death thinking they might get a chance to come up and play.”

Bright spot: Impending fatherhood is brightening what otherwise has been an, um, intriguing season for Turner. The 25-year-old Eunice, La., native and – like shortstop Zack Cozart – product of the University of Mississippi was acquired by the Reds out of the Minnesota in the second round of last December's Rule 5 draft. That meant he had to spend the entire season with the major-league team or be offered back to the Twins first and then to other teams before he could be sent to the minor leagues.

Except for a medical rehab stint with Louisville that ended on June 18, Turner has spent the entire season with the Reds, but he’s collected just 42 at bats in 23 games. He’s started seven games, five in the first 20 games of the season and none since July 18. He played the final two innings of Sunday’s 13-4 loss to St. Louis, his first action since pinch-hitting Tuesday in Pittsburgh. Just before that, he sat for nine straight games over 10 days.

“I don’t want to say it’s a grind, because I’m in the major leagues, which is where you want to be, but it’s tough staying focused, even though you know you could go in at any time,” said the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Turner, who’s hitting .167 with three runs batted in and three doubles. “You just have to make the most of it. I put in my work on the side and try to stay ready. Everybody’s dream is to be in the big leagues, but you play baseball to play baseball. I’ll stick around as long as they want me.”

Turner smiled when told that the Reds Twitter account announced that he’d entered Sunday’s game as Cincinnati’s pitcher.

“Far from it,” he said.

Remembering "Groove": Price has fond memories of Don "Groove" Baylor, the former major league player, manager and coach who passed away on Monday at the age of 68.

“Don and I were together in Seattle in 2005,” Price said. “He was the hitting coach, and I was the pitching coach. I always admired him as a player. I remember playing his Strat-O-Matic card back in 1983. He was a base-stealer and defender and power hitter, but he also had a real presence as a leader. You could throw him a fastball high and tight and he’d just wear it and head on down to first base and never complain.

“He was a humble guy. He would never talk about his accomplishments as a player. He would just talk baseball.”

Stint No. 3: Brice joins the Reds for the third time this season and first since being optioned on July 6. He had no record and a 5.68 earned-run average in a combined 19 games over his first two tours of duty with the Reds.

'Disco' Progress: Price doesn't know when right-hander Anthony DeSclafani will be able to throw again, but he was happy to report that DeSclafani is making progress with the right forearm tendinitis that forced him to cut short a rehab start with Dayton on Thursday.

“There’s some soreness that he’s been able to alleviate, which is a great sign,” Price said.

DeSclafani, 27, hasn’t pitched all season while dealing a strained ligament in his right elbow.

"Sal"-ivating: Rookie right-hander Sal Romano (2-3, 4.88 earned-run average) is scheduled to make his seventh career appearance and start and first against the Padres in Game Two of the four-game series on Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. Romano gave up eight hits and four runs in six innings of Cincinnati's 6-0 loss at Pittsburgh on Thursday.

Right-hander Luis Perdomo (5-6, 4.92) is San Diego’s scheduled starter. Perdomo is 1-1 with a 4.26 ERA in two career starts against the Reds.

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