The Cincinnati Reds target veteran reliever Craig Stammen as replacement for the injured Drew Storen.
The Cincinnati Reds have to replace the versatile veteran reliever Drew Storen. He is out for the year with a torn Ulnar Collateral Ligament after the Reds failed to move him earlier in the year. The Reds’ first choice to replace him is free agent Craig Stammen.
Stammen debuted with the Washington Nationals in 2009. He spent seven years with the team. The Nationals drafted him in the twelfth round of the 2005 draft and he took four years to reach the majors.
2012 was Stammen’s best season. He appeared in 59 games earning a 2.34 ERA. He collected 87 strikeouts over 88 ⅓ innings.
The following season, Stammen nearly duplicated his 2012 season. He earned an ERA of 2.76 with a WHIP of 1.29 in 2013. He went 7-6, throwing 81 ⅔ innings.
Stammen missed most of 2015 due to injury. He played in the minors for 2016. Then Stammen made a return to the majors with the San Diego Padres in 2017.
Stammen was nearly himself once more in 2017. He threw 80 ⅓ innings over 60 games. He also had a respectable 3.14 ERA, striking out 74 and walking three to earn a 1.20 WHIP.
The Cincinnati Reds signed Drew Storen in a similar manner last year.
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Drew Storen had been a career long National until moving on prior to the 2016 season. Storen played for the Toronto Blue Jays and Seattle Mariners in 2016. Then he signed with the Reds as a free agent.
Stammen is in a similar place. Coming up through the Nationals’ system, Stammen had a similar developmental path to Storen. The biggest difference is that Storen used to be a closer, while Stammen has always been a low leverage reliever.
The Reds, however, are looking for a low leverage reliever to add to a bullpen that is set on the back end. The high side fro Stammen in the Reds’ eyes would be as a set-up man. If they sign him and he becomes a set-up man, then they could flip him for a prospect or two.
The Reds likely haven’t signed Stammen yet because their forty man roster is tight. They also are negotiating with veteran infielders and starting pitchers. They also have to figure out if the starting pitcher moving to the bullpen will accept the move.
The Reds are closing in on a respectable pitching staff. With a maturing starting rotation and a bullpen stockpiled with former starters and young flame throwers, they are close to coming out of the rebuild. A player like Stammen is just the sort of hungry veteran that the Reds need to add to the mix.