CLEARWATER, Fla. --- The Reds made another roster cut on Tuesday, when outfielder/infielder Jerry Gil was reassigned to Minor League camp. This move brought the Reds' spring roster down to 36 healthy players. The club must get down to the 25-man limit before Opening Day on Monday. Gil, who missed all of 2007 recovering from elbow surgery, hit .263 (5-for-19) with two home runs and six RBIs in 12 games this spring. Despite the surgery, Gil has a superb throwing arm, which was among many things that impressed manager Dusty Baker.
"He needs to play. He didn't play at all last year," Baker said. "We're getting to the point where guys aren't getting many at-bats. He realized he needed to go down and get some at-bats and play. He's going to be a player, a very good player. He just has to stay healthy." Gil will open the season for Triple-A Louisville and likely play the outfield. Louisville's outfield could conceivably have top prospect Jay Bruce, Chris Dickerson and Gil. "They're going to have some outfield in Louisville," Baker said. With 11 cuts left to be made, Baker hoped he could get most of them done before the Reds' freight truck heads north on Wednesday. "We have to make some decisions on some things in a lot of areas," Baker said. "It's not my money, but you hope that's not a determining factor. But it's part of baseball any time or any business. A team wants to stay on budget. I hate to take it down to the wire like this. It's unfair to the players and their families. But this is the situation we're in because of competition or because certain guys haven't really stepped it up ahead of the other guy."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.