Cincinnati Reds Promote Layne Somsen, Place Jay Bruce on Paternity Leave

Feb 24, 2016; Goodyear, AZ, USA; Cincinnati Reds pitcher Layne Somsen poses for a portrait during media day at the Reds training facility at Goodyear Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 24, 2016; Goodyear, AZ, USA; Cincinnati Reds pitcher Layne Somsen poses for a portrait during media day at the Reds training facility at Goodyear Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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Another move to bolster the bullpen has been made by the Cincinnati Reds.

As expected, the Reds placed outfielder Jay Bruce on paternity leave on Monday as he awaits the birth of his first child. To take his place on the roster, the team called up right-handed reliever Layne Somsen from Triple-A Louisville. He isn’t currently on the 40-man roster, so another move will be made later in the day.

Bruce will be out a maximum of three days, meaning he’ll likely miss the whole series against the New York Mets and return to the lineup for Friday’s game in Pittsburgh.

With the bullpen constantly being overworked, the move to call up an extra reliever in the meantime makes sense. Somsen, a 22nd-round draft pick out of South Dakota State in 2013, has a track record of success in the minor leagues, posting a 2.49 ERA and 1.15 WHIP in 173 1/3 career innings. The 26-year-old has also struck out 9.1 batters per nine innings, while walking 3.5, and has allowed only nine home runs.

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The Reds seem to think highly of him, as he was one of seven players from the organization sent to play against top minor-league competition in the Arizona Fall League during the offseason. In 10 2/3 innings with the Peoria Javelinas, he posted a 3.38 ERA and struck out 13.

This year in Triple-A Louisville, the righty has been one of the Bats’ best relievers, allowing only one run in 8 2/3 innings, while striking out 11 and walking three.

Somsen has an unusual delivery to the plate, which can cause him to have somewhat erratic control at times. Last year, he walked a career-high 4.3 batters per nine innings, but he has shown improved command early in 2016.

There’s no obvious choice for removal from the 40-man roster, so it’ll be interesting to see what the Reds do to make room for Somsen. Nobody on the disabled list is a candidate to be transferred to the 60-day DL, which will likely mean the club is forced to designate someone for assignment.

UPDATE: The Reds actually did wind up transferring someone to the 60-day DL, and that player is pitcher Michael Lorenzen, who has been dealing with an elbow strain and mononucleosis.