Should the Cincinnati Reds Use Lorenzen and/or Iglesias in the Bullpen?


When the Cincinnati Reds sent Michael Lorenzen to Triple-A Louisville rather than keeping him in the majors to pitch out of the bullpen, it was clear that the team was looking at the bigger picture. In the minor leagues, Lorenzen can continue to start and get used to pitching starter’s innings before eventually taking a spot in the Reds’ rotation.

The team made the same decision with Raisel Iglesias, choosing to option him to Louisville after his Reds’ debut on Sunday rather than moving him to the bullpen with Homer Bailey‘s return impending.

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With the current state of the Reds’ bullpen, would they be better off calling up Lorenzen and Iglesias — two undeniably talented pitchers — to help them in relief?

There’s no question that the bullpen has been a huge problem for the Reds in the early part of the season. Outside of Aroldis ChapmanJ.J. Hoover, and Pedro Villarreal — the only relievers yet to give up a run — the bullpen has an atrocious ERA of 7.79 and an equally terrible WHIP of 2.08 in 17 1/3 innings. A particular problem has been the eighth inning role. Two pitchers have gotten an opportunity to pitch in the eighth inning, Kevin Gregg and Jumbo Diaz, and have been major disappointments, combining to give up five home runs.

Given the struggles of the Reds’ bullpen, there’s little doubt that Lorenzen and Iglesias could help. However, I don’t think the Reds want to get into the same situation with either pitcher that they did with Chapman, where they moved him to the bullpen to fill a need at the moment and never went back to starting. The move obviously worked out for Chapman, as he’s become one of the best closers in baseball, but you don’t want Lorenzen and Iglesias to get stuck in the bullpen too and waste their potential as starters.

Having said that, I do think that Lorenzen and/or Iglesias could help the Reds’ bullpen this year, just not immediately. Both will be on an innings limit this season, so why not bring one or both of them up to help in relief when they’re nearing their limit? That way, they can both be better prepared to start for the Reds in the future as well as help the team this season. In the meantime, the Reds could turn to other options in the minors if needed, such as Sam LeCure.

One thing is for certain, though: for the Cincinnati Reds to have any success this season, the bullpen is going to have to get their act together and stop blowing late leads.

What do you all think? Should the Reds call up Michael Lorenzen and/or Raisel Iglesias?

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