GOODYEAR, Arizona – Sonny Gray, last year’s Opening Day starter, spent his first start of spring training experimenting and tinkering with a few of his pitches. "I'm very happy with the way I can make the baseball move and what I'm doing with the baseball," Gray said. "I think as part of developing into the next step and me developing – you're always trying to get better – me developing into, I think, even a more complete and better pitcher."
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Shogo Akiyama returned to spring training after a week away to be with his wife, who was seriously injured when a tree fell on her in a park in Ohio. Akaya Akiyama was hospitalized after being injured by the tree last week while she was walking in Sharon Woods in Cincinnati. “I was in the hospital with her, I was spending time with (the) kids,” the 32-year-old Akiyama said through a translator at the team's spring training complex in Goodyear, Arizona.
People know what he’s capable of doing – and yet, he was the talk of the camp after his spring training debut Wednesday. His first two pitches were 98 mph and 99 mph, regularly sitting between 97-99 mph in his two innings pitched. His slider was filthy.