Cincinnati Reds sign and waive veteran Yovani Gallardo

(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)
(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images) /

In a move that showed a lack of planning the Cincinnati Reds signed Yovani Gallardo to a one year deal.

The Cincinnati Reds needed a veteran swing man all off-season long.  Then one fell into their lap at the end of spring training.  Unfortunately, he never had the chance to be what the Reds needed.

Yovani Gallardo made 289 starts in his 12 year career of 301 appearances.  That means that he averaged just one relief appearance per season.  He also averaged 24 starts per season.

Gallardo has a career ERA of 3.97 and a WHIP of 1.36.  His career record is 113-93.  In other words Gallardo has pitched slightly better than the Reds’ number one starter, Homer Bailey and was the Milwaukee Brewers’ ace as recently as three seasons ago.

The stat line domination continues from there.  Gallardo averages 144 innings per season, which would have led the Reds last year.  The 32 year old also averages 16 home runs allowed per season.

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The stats aren’t all great.  The past two seasons, Gallardo has been a replacement level pitcher.  In this case, though, the Reds needed a number five starter that would pivot to the bullpen if all of the starters got healthy.

The issue is that the Reds put him in the bullpen when they signed him.  Gallardo should have been sent to extended spring training to get ready to start.  One among the quartet of Cody Reed, Luis Castillo, Sal Romano, or Tyler Mahle will need to go to the minors, if not more than one of them, in 2018.

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The Cincinnati Reds got nothing out of Yovani Gallardo this season.

Gallardo had an awful season for the Reds before they cut him.  He pitched three games, all in relief.  Then the Reds designated him for assignment.

Gallardo left the Reds with a 30.86 ERA and a WHIP of 5.14.  He did have 2 strikeouts in 2 1/3 innings.  He also walked four batters.

The real death knell was his second appearance of the season.  Gallardo pitched 1/3 of inning and allowed 6 runs.  It included four hits and a pair of walks.

His last outing wasn’t that bad.  He didn’t give up a run over an inning of work walking just one.  He also gave up a hit, so he couldn’t get a clean inning with the Reds.

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The Reds could really use a starting pitcher like Gallardo.  A replacement level guy that would be able to lead them in innings pitched would be fantastic.  Instead, the Reds watched the veteran implode in a roll he had never filled at the big league level and then sign a minor league deal with another team.