Cincinnati Reds: Is the Rotation in Trouble?

The Cincinnati Reds have mounting starting rotation injuries. Are they already in trouble?

The Cincinnati Reds aren’t expected to contend this year in the National League Central. Heck, they might even get the number one pick in the 2018 MLB Draft.  One part of the squad that’s going to be really weak this year is their starting rotation.

Homer Bailey is already on the 60-day DL after having surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow. He’s made a total of eight starts over the past two seasons and the Reds are on the hook for $63 million over the next three seasons.

Now, you can add Anthony DeSclafani to the injury list.

The 26 year old was going to be the anchor of a young Reds rotation this season, but now those plans are on hold and he should miss the first couple of weeks of the season, if not more.

“Obviously, any time you avoid the worst case, it’s good,” Williams said. “We were hoping that would be the case. Anthony says it still feels like something he could pitch with, but he knew something was wrong. When he threw his bullpen the other day, he felt something after a specific pitch. It correlates with what they saw on the MRI.”

Right now, the only locks in the rotation are going to be Brandon Finnegan and Scott Feldman. Amir Garrett has 0.79 ERA so far this spring and had a taste of AAA last season, so it’s possible he is a part of their 2017 plans. On the free agent market, there are pitchers like Doug Fister and Colby Lewis still out there.

Other names in the organization are Robert Stephenson, Rookie Davis, Tim Adelman, Cody Reed, Sal Romano and Luis Castillo. Former Red Bronson Arroyo was brought in on a minor league contract this spring and could certainly have a shot now with all these injuries.

It wouldn’t shock me to see a prospect or two make the rotation and even an outside pitcher like Fister or a trade for a pitcher from outside the organization. I don’t think the team should turn to Michael Lorenzen or Raisel Iglesias. Let them form the core of the bullpen and try to rely on some of the younger arms like Garrett and Stephenson.

It’s going to be a long season in Cincy, but now these young pitchers have a chance to step up and show they can pitch in the big leagues.

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