Versatile Frazier makes sixth start in left field

Versatile Frazier makes sixth start in left field

PITTSBURGH -- For the first time since June 30, Reds rookie Todd Frazier found himself in the lineup as a left fielder on Friday against the Pirates. The move was more forward thinking than just about finding a place for him to play.

"I'm pretty excited. You never know in playoff time, anything can happen," said Frazier, who started his sixth game of the season in left field. "You have to cover all your bases as a coaching staff and team. They know I can play all the positions and they understand when the time is needed, they can get me out there."

During Thursday's 2-1 win over the Brewers, Frazier hit the game-tying home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth -- his first long ball since Aug. 21. He has started 36 games this season at first base and 65 at third base.

The Reds have been without regular left fielder Ryan Ludwick since he left a Sept. 19 game at Chicago with tightness in his left groin. Acting manager Chris Speier expects Ludwick to start on Sunday.

"One of the great things about Fraz is he is very flexible in regards to where he can play," Speier said. "He can play third and first and now the outfield. It gives us more options just in case. We're anxious to get Ludwick back in the swing of things."

If Ludwick plays without issue Sunday, then he can likely play the final three games in St. Louis. But Frazier makes for suitable insurance.

"That's a big decision for Dusty [Baker] and this team to see how ready [Ludwick] is," Speier said. "I don't foresee any problems with Ludwick. He's been down this road before."