The Cincinnati Reds pushed back the end of the rebuild another season in trading Dan Straily.
With the trade of Dan Straily, the Cincinnati Reds pushed back the end of the rebuild another year. As it stand now, there is no young veteran starting pitcher on the Reds roster. That is one of the key positions to the rebuilding process.
Anthony DeSclafani may become that man. He has made 51 starts over two seasons for the Reds since coming over from the Miami Marlins in the Mat Latos deal. He is penciled into the opening day starter’s role this year, but he was last year too.
At least DeSclafani and his left-handed buddy, Brandon Finnegan, can be counted on to make their turn in the rotation. The over under in starts for a healthy Homer Bailey was 27. until he entered camp requiring surgery and that number plummetted.
The rest of the possible starters lack a big leaugue resume. They are all prospects and that means their output is unknown. The Reds won’t know until the season starts.
At least the Reds have a plethora of prospects to roll out there this season. Robert Stephenson and Tim Adleman both looked good for stretches in 2016. Rookie Davis and Amir Garrett both look like they are the real deal. Then there is Cody Reed, the top prospect that came back from the Kansas City Royals in the Johnny Cueto deal. Trading away Straily shows great faith in Garrett.
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Straily likely would have made 32 starts and pitched another 190 innings. He would have likely regressed to a .500 record with about 175 strikeouts. Given his home runs allowed likely would have rolled back to about 25, his ERA would have stayed around 3.90.
What will the rest of the rotation options likely look for the Cincinnati Reds in 2017?
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Tim Adleman is like Dan Straily Lite. He can put together a season of .500 pitching with an ERA under 4.00. Adleman, though, is likely only good for about 19 starts and less than 120 innings as the Reds will hold him back.
That means that the prospects have to make at least 60 starts for this to work. That means that from among Rookie Davis, Amir Garrett, Cody Reed, and Robert Stephenson at least one must step forward from day 1 to make 30+ starts. None of the above seems ready to take that step.
The likely scenario that may work for the Reds is to start Adleman in the rotation to start the season covering for Homer Bailey with both Amir Garrett and Robert Stephenson starting as well.
If the Reds can hold the rotation together until the All-Star break help may arrive. There are other prospects on their way.
Jon Moscot, who pitched for the Reds in 2015, is recovering from an injury and should be back after the All-Star Game. Nick Travieso, who is going to be in the big league camp, could be ready to make his big league debut around mid-season. Either or both of these pitchers could be making starts down the stretch.
That is the problem with the Reds again this season. This isn’t a development plan. This a plan to hold things together while the youngsters develop for another year.