The Cincinnati Reds make their first cuts


Cincinnati Reds pitcher Tim Crabbe was one of 16 players cut from big league camp. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer was the first to report the cuts made by the Cincinnati Reds this spring. In all, the Reds cut 16 players from big league camp as they sent all of them but one to the minor leagues.

The most surprising move was that infielder Henry Rodriguez was released from the organization and is now a free agent. Rodriguez was on the 40-man roster as recently as last month before he was waived so the Reds could claim RHP Brett Marshall from the Cubs. He cleared waivers and came back to the organizations. After going 3-16 this spring he wound up being released by the club. He will be 24-years-old this season.

The Reds optioned nine players to the minors and assigned another six. The difference between the two is simply that players who are on the 40-man roster are optioned to a team in the minor leagues (at this point in the year where they are optioned is not always where they will begin their season, though it is likely). Players who are assigned to minor league camp were simply non-roster invitees to spring training and aren’t assigned to a given team, just to the minor leagues.

Here are the players who were optioned to Triple-A Louisville with the Bats:

Here are the players who were optioned to Double-A Pensacola with the Blue Wahoos:

And here is the list of the players that were assigned to minor league camp:

As noted above, the biggest surprise was that the organization released Henry Rodriguez. After that though perhaps the biggest surprise was optioning LHP David Holmberg. When he was traded for over the winter the Reds seemed to be looking at him as the 6th starter and with Mat Latos perhaps missing his first start, his option this early is surprising.

Of the optioned players pitchers Carlos Contreras and Ismael Guillon are the best bets to start their seasons with a team other than the one they were optioned to. Contreras threw just 42.1 innings in Double-A Pensacola last season as a starter and a return to the Blue Wahoos would seem like a good fit no matter the role he finds himself in. Ismael Guillon struggled in Low-A Dayton as he walked 95 batters in 121.1 innings. While his walk rate did improve in the second half of the season, it was still quite a bit higher than you would like to see. A jump over Advanced-A and into Double-A would be awfully aggressive for a pitcher who has shown a history of struggling to find the strikezone.