Reds' Coleman pleased with spring debut

Right-handed reliever fired scoreless inning Tuesday, with two K's

Reds' Coleman pleased with spring debut

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Looking to keep his name in the ring for a Reds bullpen spot, non-roster reliever Louis Coleman had a successful spring debut vs. the Dodgers on Tuesday with one scoreless inning.

Coleman dealt with right biceps tendinitis since the early days of camp.

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"It's always good to get out there and get your feet. I'm glad I got it out of the way and that it felt good and went good," Coleman said on Wednesday.

With five spots likely locked up for the bullpen, Cincinnati has two openings left, possibly three if it decides to go with an eight-man bullpen.

Despite being behind schedule, the right-handed Coleman felt he could still have a good bid to make the team.

"I think so. This was kind of the plan the whole time since I brought [the injury] up," Coleman said. "I'd rather give them 5-7 good outings vs. 10 where I have to grind through it. I feel like it's enough. I don't know, I hope it is."

From 2011-15, Coleman was a member of the Royals, posting a 2.69 ERA over 117 games during his first three big league seasons. The '14 season was a struggle for him -- he had a 5.56 ERA in 31 games -- and spent most of '15 in Triple-A before being released.

"I broke my [middle] finger at the beginning of camp [in 2014], at the tip. It took a really long time to come back from it," Coleman said.

Coleman, 30, was signed to a Minor League contract on Jan. 10 after he was non-tendered by the Dodgers. In a career-high 61 appearances last season, he had a 4.69 ERA and 1.44 WHIP in 48 innings. He dealt with shoulder fatigue in August and struggled down the stretch with a 10.80 ERA over his final 11 games.

"I hadn't thrown that much and eventually just got tired. No structural issue. I needed a break," Coleman said.

During Coleman's outing Tuesday, the leadoff batter reached on an error and made it to second base on a passed ball. But Coleman got a groundout and two strikeouts to escape.

"Considering how much time he missed from the time he threw live BP to when he faced batters again, he was around the plate," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "He had some funky swings on him. He did a good job."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.