Cozart sits in favor of Valdez vs. Zito

Cozart sits in favor of Valdez vs. Zito

CINCINNATI -- Reds rookie shortstop Zack Cozart's brisk hitting pace has slowed some in recent days, but that wasn't the catalyst for his not being in Wednesday's lineup vs. the Giants.

It had more to do with San Francisco starting lefty Barry Zito and that utility infielder Wilson Valdez had a good track record. Valdez, who came in 3-for-10 lifetime vs. Zito, started in Cozart's place.

"It's a day against a softer thrower and those young guys aren't crazy about soft throwers -- old guys, too, for that matter," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "I believe in playing everybody. Valdez has had pretty good success against Zito."

Cozart entered the night batting .288 with one homer and three RBIs, but was on a 5-for-25 (.200) clip over his last six games.