Bailey scratched with mild right groin strain

Bailey scratched with mild right groin strain

PHOENIX -- Two years ago, the Reds went through the entire 2012 season with all five starters in their rotation staying healthy. This year, three starters have already been injured during Spring Training.

Homer Bailey became the latest pitcher to be hurt when he was scratched from his start Saturday because of a mild right groin strain.

"We just decided to be cautious," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "He's right on time, he's throwing the ball good, so we're just going to push him back. I can't tell you exactly when he's going to make his next start. It's not a significant strain."

Bailey felt something while throwing during Friday afternoon's workout, and he notified the medical staff.

"It was kind of weird," Bailey said. "It all just kind of happened at once. I was already done with my throwing for the day and throwing a little flat ground and literally said, 'OK, one more.' Sure enough, that one more was [it]. I didn't feel anything before it happened, nothing. It just kind of came out of nowhere."

While considered a minor injury, and not one expected to affect his status for beginning the regular season on time, it was enough to alarm Bailey.

"It scared me right away," Bailey said. "Even afterwards, I was doing stuff and it kind of tightened up on me, and I said, 'Well, maybe I'll get it checked out. Let's be proactive about it and get this thing knocked out.'"

Last month, Bailey was signed to a six-year, $105 million contract by Cincinnati. In 32 starts last season, the 27-year-old was 11-12 with a career-best 3.49 ERA in 32 starts. He also achieved career bests in innings (209) and strikeouts (199).

Through his three spring starts, Bailey is 0-1 with a 4.00 ERA, having allowed four earned runs and four hits, including two home runs, in nine innings.

Reds camp began with starter Mat Latos tearing meniscus cartilage in his left knee and needing surgery. Latos may get into his first spring game next week. Mike Leake missed his first start of spring with a mild abdomen strain but has since made two starts without issues. Johnny Cueto has not been injured this spring, but he has been under close scrutiny after a right lat strain kept him out most of last season.

"I guess better now than when the season starts," Price said of his rotation's injuries. "Optimistically, I feel like there's a chance we can start with all five intact. I don't think the Homer thing will be an issue. Johnny has been feeling good. Mat came out of [Friday live batting practice] feeling good. Leaker seems to be over the hump. Some of these things we could have been more aggressive with if it was in-season or if it was a big series. These guys probably could have pitched. It just doesn't make any sense to run these guys through it."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.