It almost happened two springs ago with the Reds. Brian Buchanan, a journeyman outfielder, played over 20 exhibition games with Cincinnati and batted above .400. Buchanan was a final day cut and missed going north when the club decided it wanted lefty-hitting Andy Abad instead as the 25th man.Promising prospect? Jeff Conine's stay with the Reds was relatively brief. The return he yielded from his August trade to the Mets could be promising. Conine went to New York on Aug. 20 in exchange for Minor League shortstop Jose Castro and outfielder Sean Henry. Castro, 21, came over from the Minor League camp and played in Tuesday's game. "I got good reports on him," Baker said. "I talked to [vice president of player development] Tony Bernazard from the Mets. Tony liked him a lot. They didn't want to give him up." In 90 games last season at Class A Port St. Lucie and Double-A Chattanooga, Castro batted a combined .312 with two homers, 26 RBIs and a .357 on-base percentage. Class of 2007: The Reds' seventh-round Draft pick in June, third baseman Brandon Waring batted .311 with 20 home runs and 61 RBIs in 68 games with rookie-level Billings. Waring, who also committed 16 errors, finished 2007 with one game at Class A Dayton. What they're saying: "A lot of little things from around the game. Not so much the physical things, but the way to think around the game and the way to approach different situations and how to respond to different things. The experience part was the biggest thing." -- Stubbs, on what he learned during his second professional season in 2007
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.