Good news for Reds fans: Left-hander Dontrelle Willis is in terrific physical and mental condition, according to his agent, Matt Sosnick.
“He looks like an NFL receiver right now,” Sosnick said Thursday. “Very little body fat, totally ripped, eating meticulously. He’s in the best shape of his life. And mentally, he’s in the best place I’ve ever seen him.”
Sosnick said he was struck by Willis' confidence while spending time with him Wednesday at the pitcher’s home in Arizona.
“There’s no doubt in his mind that he’s going to come back to 100 percent,” Sosnick said. “Based on the day I spent with him, I’d have to agree that he’s going to.
“I’m incredibly optimistic, seeing how happy he is, how content he is. He still has to do it. But everything is in place for him to have a good year.”
Willis signed a minor-league contract with the Reds in November. He will compete for a spot in the bullpen, but could move into the rotation if he pitches well and a need arises.
For Willis, the 2011 season could be pivotal.
He twice went on the disabled list in ’09 due to recurring anxiety disorder. He was traded by the Tigers and released by the Diamondbacks in ‘10.
Over the past three seasons, he is 3-9 with a 6.86 ERA in 30 appearances, 27 starts.
— Ken Rosenthal