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Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Dodgers ponder making Chris Reed a reliever

By Mark Saxon

GLENDALE, Ariz. – One of the Dodgers’ top pitching prospects said his goal this spring, his first in big-league camp, is to make his “presence felt.”

Chris Reed did that the other day in the team’s second intra-squad game, working two scoreless innings that included a strikeout of Yasiel Puig on an impressive changeup. The question for Reed, a left-hander, is what kind of presence are the Dodgers looking for out of him?

He said he prefers to remain a starting pitcher, but the team is considering converting him to relief. With that in mind, pitching coach Rick Honeycutt is working with him on throwing a slider to augment a fastball, changeup and slower breaking ball which he calls a “slurve.”

“It’s tough,” Reed said, “but that’s what I really want to accomplish by the end of camp.”

Reed, 23, was 4-11 with a 3.86 ERA last season for Double-A Chattanooga that included four relief appearances. According to Baseball America, Reed is the Dodgers’ No. 8 prospect. He was drafted in the first round out of Stanford in 2011.

Honeycutt thinks Reed has a good enough arm to pitch in the big leagues now. Of course, he might have a quicker path as a reliever than a starter.

“He’s worked really hard and his delivery has gotten better and better,” Honeycutt said.