Found May 02, 2012 on Fox Sports Ohio:
Mlb_may_30_f03c
CINCINNATI When Ryan Hanigan isn't wearing his hockey-style mask behind home plate as a catcher for the Cincinnati Reds he likes to horse around. Literally. The 31-year-old jockey-sized (in comparison to most baseball players) catcher is in the horse business, the owner one racehorse, seven breeding broodmares, three foals and two racers in training. So, it's time for an insider tip on who is going to win Saturday's Kentucky Derby, right. Without hesitation, Hanigan says, "Bodemeister." But he also acknowledges that the field is one of the strongest in many years and any one of a half dozen thoroughbreds could wear the roses. When somebody mentioned that the white horse, Hanson, might be a little short on the distance, Hanigan smiled and said, "Well, we'll see. "There are a lot of good horses in this field and it's a good race to not bet the favorites," he said. "Bodemeister won so impressively in the last race (Arkansas Derby) he ran and he looks so good." On the same day the Kentucky Derby goes off, Hanigan will be in Pittsburgh with his Cincinnati Reds teammates, but he'll have his ears cocked toward a race track. And it won't be Churchill Downs. They will be tuned to Arlington Park near Chicago, where his horse, Zahrah, will run a mile and a fourth, the same distance as the Derby. "I got her as a yearling to be a broodmare, but I wanted to see if she had talent," said Hanigan. "She won her last race at Tampa Bay Downs. "Most of my business is breeding and I have a bunch of nice broodmares," he said. "I have some really good breeding horses and I have some good matings coming up. And I have two nice foals on the ground right now." Hanigan, in fact, believes that his stock and the scheduled matings might some day lead to his own entry into the Kentucky Derby, something he dreams about almost as much as he dreams of a grand slam home run to win Game 7 of the World Series. Hanigan's stock is in Kentucky, all the brooadmares and foals, plus the horses in training. How does a guy playing the national pastime who was born in Washington, D.C. and lives in Andover, Mass., get into the sport of kings? "Horse racing is big in this part of the country and I had a couple of friends who are real knowledgeable and have been in the business. They taught me a lot about the business," he said. "I did a lot of research and history reading to understand pedigree. I have a good handle on it now, especially the paper work and business side, but I have professionals to help me in the other aspects. But I have a pretty good base on that part, too." Off the track and in the batter's box things are looking up for Hanigan, too, after a, uh, slow break from the gate. He began a series against the Chicago Cubs Wednesday riding a career-best eight-game hitting streak (11-29, .379). Behind the plate, he shares duties with rookie Devin Mesoraco. When Hanigan catches, the Reds are 10-3 with a 2.66 earned run average. When Mesoraco catches, the team is 1-8 with a 4.75 ERA. It is a given that Hanigan is as sound behind the plate as a perfectly tuned engine and his situational hitting is a dead, solid, nearly perfect. But then there was that slow break from the gate that has turned into a sprint to catch up. "I've found my swing and I've found my tempo," he said. "I found the rhythm in my swing and the way I load up my swing allows me to be on every pitch." During spring training and early in the season Hanigan wasn't able to harness that successful swing, got away from the way he loads up before taking a swing. "I was getting caught between, so I went back to my old load that I do and it allows me to be on the ball and be on time." Go back? Why did he change? "I don't know," he said with a laugh. "You get away from things that work. I was looking at my video and saw it and said, Why am I not doing this any more?' It is such a simple adjustment and it got me back into the right rhythm. A little thing, but it works." Spoken like a true horseman or baseball player.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Jay Bruce riding hot stream into Cubs series

Right fielder Jay Bruce has always been a streaky hitter, and his latest streak netted him the National League Player of the Week award. Bruce hit .476 with four home runs and 10 RBI for the week. He has home runs in his last four games. It is Bruce's fourth Player of the Week honor. Bruce led the majors in slugging percentage (1.143) and total bases (24). He was second in...

MINOR details 5/1/2012: Puckett drives in winning run as Blue Wahoos walk off

Puckett won it for Pensacola Durham 5 Louisville 4 (10 innings) -Brett Tomko gave us two earned runs over five innings for the Bats (9-17). Josh Judy (1-1) blew the save and took the loss allowing two earned in two innings, including the walk-off run in the bottom of the 10th. -SS Kris Negron went 2-5 with a triple, a solo home run, and two runs scored. DH Danny Dorn added...

Minor League Game Review – 5/3/12

5/3 Game Review Louisville won 4-3 in 11 innings. Box Score Felix Perez went 1-4 with a walk and a run. Danny Dorn went 1-5 with a triple, RBI and a run. Bill Rhinehart went 3-5 with a double and RBI. Sean Gallagher allowed 3 runs in 7 innings with 2 walks and 6 strikeouts. Kanekoa Texeira threw 1.2 shutout innings with 2 walks and a strikeout. Travis Webb threw 2 perfect innings...

Card of the day: Jay Bruce

Bruce has been on an absolute tear recently. He's homered in four straight games and currently ranks in the top five in the league in homers (7), RBIs (17), SLG (.617), total bases (50), XBH (12), and runs created (17.5).   He's had at least one hit in nine of his last ten games -- six of those have been multi-hit games. Let's hope the left-handed...

Reds' homestand ends with comeback win

CINCINNATI It was the kind of game on a hot, humid afternoon that sometimes defines a team's personality for the rest of the season. For the Cincinnati Reds it seems like serenity and complete confidence. For the Chicago Cubs it seems like schizophrenia. It was a day that the Reds were down to their last gulp of oxygen, three outs away from losing two straight to the Cubs...

MINOR details 4/30/2012: Bats, Dragons fall; Blue Wahoos, Blaze rest

Maybe Louisville and Dayton should have joinedPensacola and Bakersfield and taken the day off. Norfolk 6 Louisville 5 (12 innings) -The Bats (9-16) used six pitchers in the extra-innings loss. Starter Andrew Brackman walked five and gave up three earned runs in just one innings. Ron Mahay and Nick Christiani each threw three scoreless, while Kanekoa Texeira added one scoreless...

The Daily Brief: What to say after a rainout

Last Game Reds fans’ unwanted vacation from baseball was extended yesterday when severe storms forced the game to be canceled. If you had a ticket, check out the rain check information. Next Game See yesterday’s brief: it’s still Bronson Arroyo against Jeff Samardzija, who is on really long rest now. Rookie Success League in … [visit site to read more]

Reds vs. Pirates series preview

The Reds meet the divisional rival Pirates for the first time this season with a trip to Pittsburgh and a three-game set beginning on Friday night. If you like offense, you might not want to check out this series preview…. Cincinnati (12-12)  at Pittsburgh (11-14) We’re all well aware of the Reds’ offensive woes. The Redlegs’...

Reds vs. Cubs series preview

Don’t look now, but the Redlegs are winners of their past three series and where did that streak begin? In Chicago, of course, and that’s just who happens to be heading to GABP as the Reds and Cubs meet up for the second time in just over a week.  This fella appears to be doing his thing again this season. The Cubs enter the week at 8...

Reds' opener with Cubs postponed

CINCINNATI (AP) -- The opener of a series between the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds has been postponed because lines of thunderstorms moved through the area. The game wasn't immediately rescheduled. It was the first postponement for both teams this season and the fifth overall at Great American Ball Park, which opened in 2003. The game was called two hours after the scheduled...

Cubs' series opener vs Reds postponed

The opener of a series between the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds has been postponed because lines of thunderstorms moved through the area. The game wasn't immediately rescheduled. It was the first postponement for both teams this season and the fifth overall at Great American Ball Park, which opened in 2003. The game was called two hours after the scheduled start Tuesday...

Reds 4, Cubs 3(10)

Wild Cubs closer Carlos Marmol helped Cincinnati rally for three runs in the ninth to tie it, and Scott Rolen hit a sacrifice fly in the 10th inning that swept the Reds to a 4-3 victory Thursday and two-game split. Marmol let a 3-0 lead slip away by walking three of the five batters he faced, allowing Cincinnati to tie it with only one hit in the inning. It was his third blown save...

Game 23: Cubs 3, Reds 1

I apparently have lost the ability to enjoy baseball games that the Cincinnati Reds lose. Either that, or when the Reds lose–to the Chicago Cubs, of all … [visit site to read more]

Reds-Pirates Preview

Johnny Cueto is off to the best start of his career, and a meeting with the Pittsburgh Pirates may just keep him rolling. Cueto looks to match his longest unbeaten run as the Cincinnati Reds open a three-game road series against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night. Cueto (3-0, 1.39 ERA) has won all five decisions with a 2.28 ERA over his last 12 starts dating to a road loss...

Reds sign Michael Wuertz to a Minor League deal

The Cincinnati Reds have signed veteran reliever Michael Wuertz to a Minor league deal according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. Wuertz, 33, pitched last season with the A's and went 0-0 with a 6.68 ERA, 1.3 HR/9, 7.0 BB/9 and 8.6 SO/9 in 33.2 innings. He has a career record of 21-11 with a 3.71 ERA, 1.0 HR/9, 4.3 BB/9 and 9.6 SO/9 in 414.1 innings with the Cubs and Athletics...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.