Cincinnati Reds third baseman Scott Rolen fouled off some tough pitches from Vin Mazzaro before hitting an RBI single on Friday.
''I will take at-bats like that all year long,'' Rolen said.
All year long? The Reds would like that very much, too.
Rolen's health is a big key for Cincinnati, which beat the Kansas City Royals 5-1 on Friday. He played in only 65 games last season and had surgery on his left shoulder in July.
Rolen has five hits in nine at-bats this spring and appears to be mobile in the field.
''I'm not worried about my health or seeing the ball,'' he said. ''I didn't go home tired last season. I felt like I didn't contribute last season.''
Reds manager Dusty Baker is thrilled to have Rolen back. Cincinnati sorely missed his presence in the middle of the lineup last season, when it slipped from NL Central champions to 79-83.
''Scotty is getting ready,'' Baker said. ''He's not there yet but almost.''
Royals left-hander Danny Duffy struck out five in two hitless in...