Reds Caravan at Grand Central Mall today

VIENNA – Major League Baseball generally is reserved for afternoon or night.

Not today.

Area fans who are at the Grand Central Mall this morning will get an opportunity to meet members of the Cincinnati Reds as the team’s east caravan -one of four on the road this week -makes it annual visit, weather permitting.

Festivities begin at 11 a.m. and will run until 1:30 p.m.

Among those scheduled to participate is manager Bryan Price, who in October was promoted from pitching coach to manager following the dismissal of Dusty Baker, the man for whom Price served as pitching coach for the past four seasons.

The 51-year-old Price signed a three-year contract to become the 61st manager in the history of the Reds. While it is his first time as a major league manager, he has served as a pitching coach for three teams -the Seattle Mariners from 2000 to 2005, the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2006 through 2009 and the Reds since 2010.

Among those scheduled to accompany Price is pitcher Homer Bailey, who made his debut with the Reds in 2007 and has compiled a 49-45 record and a 4.25 earned run average. Bailey has thrilled Reds fans with a pair of no-hitters, one in each of the past two seasons. On Set. 28, 2012, he threw his first no-hitter as well as the first at PNC Park, beating the hometown Pittsburgh Pirates, 1-0.

Last season, on July 2, Bailey hurled a no-hitter at Great American Ballpark, outdueling Tim Lincecum of the San Francisco Giants, 3-0. It was only the third time in Major League Baseball history that the pitcher who hurled the final no-hitter of one season also tossed the first one of the following campaign.

Others scheduled to make the trip include Reds broadcasters Jeff Piecoro and Chris Welsh, the latter a former pitcher; third baseman Seth Mejias-Brean, the 2013 Minor League Player of the Year, who also was a standout at the University of Arizona; Jeff Graupe, the team’s director of player development; and the team’s mascot, Mr. Red.

The traditional stop is quite popular with local fans. It not only is free of charge, but it provides fans a chance to get autographs and converse with members of the organization.

One highlight of the event is a raffle for two tickets to the Reds opening game, set for 4:10 p.m. on Monday, March 31, versus the St. Louis Cardinals.