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Reds skipper Price is high on rookie Lutz

The SportsXchange

LOS ANGELES -- In his first start of the season Tuesday, Cincinnati Reds rookie outfielder/first baseman Donald Lutz made a big impact.

Lutz went 2-for-4 with a double and scored the Reds' first run during Cincinnati's 6-3 setback to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Manager Bryan Price was quite pleased with the 25-year-old's performance.

"Terrific. Definitely a lift," Price said. "A couple of balls (he hit) right on the screws against a very, very good pitcher. It was kind of a nice how-do-you do for me to put him in his first start of the season in the big-league level against (Zack) Greinke. We knew when we came in here it wasn't like we were going to get a cakewalk. They have three quality (pitchers) going."

Price said the future is bright for Lutz, who played in 34 games with the Reds last season and hit .241 with one home run.

"We like him," Price said. "He's an athlete and brings energy. He loves to play. Plays hard every minute he's on the field; works hard when he's not in the lineup. I was really happy for him and for us for that performance."

Lutz was born Watertown, N.Y., but he moved to Germany at the age of 1. He became the first German-developed player to appear in the major leagues when he made his debut in April 2013.

In 28 minor league games this year between Double-A Pensacola and Triple-A Louisville, Lutz hit .337 with a .400 on-base percentage, a .654 slugging percentage, seven homers and 19 RBIs.
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