Reds' Travis Wood loses perfect game in ninth inning

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9:18 PM:  Wood lost his bid for a perfect game on a Carlos Ruiz double with no outs in the ninth.  Still, a fine performance from a promising youngster on a first-place Reds team.

9:15 PM:  Halladay held the Reds to one hit and zero runs in the top of the ninth inning.  Wood will need to put in some extra work in order to secure a perfect game.  One thing’s for sure: Reds manager Dusty Baker will have no problem leaving the 23-year-old rookie in for well over 120 pitches.

9:05 PM:  Wood made it through the eighth inning unscathed and will head into the ninth with a chance to make history.  The score is still 0-0, however, and Wood has thrown 92 pitches.  He needs a little help from his offense.

8:58 PM:  There’s an exceptional pitching duel going on right now in Philadelphia.

Reds youngster Travis Wood has thrown seven perfect innings with eight strikeouts in his third major league start and Phillies ace Roy Halladay has allowed only four hits over eight scoreless frames.  The score is 0-0.  We’ll keep you updated.

Cardinals shut down Carlos Martínez for two weeks due to shoulder issue

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MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosh reports that the Cardinals are shutting down pitcher Carlos Martínez from throwing for two weeks because his shoulder strength isn’t where it should have been at this point. Langosch added that an MRI showed no structural damage in Martínez’s right shoulder.

Interestingly, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak didn’t sound too happy with Martínez offseason training regimen. Per Mark Saxon of The Athletic, Mozeliak said, “Obviously, there’s a history with Carlos’ shoulder and it would be probably in everybody’s best interest if he maintained a constant or perpetual approach to that program.”

Martínez, 27, battled oblique and shoulder injuries last year. He accrued just 118 2/3 innings, making just 18 starts. He was moved to the bullpen when he returned from the disabled list in August and finished out the season in that role. Still, Martínez managed a 3.11 ERA with 117 strikeouts and 60 walks.

Langosch reported last week that the Cardinals were considering using Martínez in relief again in 2019. The latest news may push the Cardinals to indeed use Martínez out of the bullpen once again. He will be reevaluated in early March, but there is a chance he won’t be ready for Opening Day.