Cincinnati Reds: Three free agent relievers the team should pursue

CLEVELAND, OH - APRIL 9: Closing pitcher Andrew Miller #24 of the Cleveland Indians pitches during the ninth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Progressive Field on April 9, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians defeated the Tigers 2-0. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - APRIL 9: Closing pitcher Andrew Miller #24 of the Cleveland Indians pitches during the ninth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Progressive Field on April 9, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians defeated the Tigers 2-0. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Reds
PHILADELPHIA, PA – MAY 25: Tyler Clippard #36 of the Toronto Blue Jays throws a pitch in the eighth inning during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on May 25, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Blue Jays won 6-5. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images) /

Tyler Clippard, RHP

Tyler Clippard, the 33-year-old from Lexington, Kentucky had a very nice year in 2018. The big right-hander played in 72 games last game, had 7 saves, and 3.67 ERA. After playing the majority of his career with the Washington Nationals, Clippard bounced around with several teams over the last couple of years.

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  • Clippard visited every division of the American League last season, as he played for the New York Yankees, Houston Astros, and Chicago White Sox. Clippard’s best seasons, however, were with the Washington Nationals.

    In 2011 Clippard was selected to his first All-Star Game. That year, Clippard went 3-0 through 81 innings of work and maintained a 1.83 ERA and an ERA+ of 2.09. Clippard’s SO9 that season was 10.6, just below his career-best of 11.1 the year before.

    Clippard would find himself in the closer’s role for the Nets the following year and record 32 saves. That would be his only season in that role, as his walks increased that during that season and his strikeout numbers took a tumble.

    Clippard did recover, however, and returned to his All-Star form in 2014 when he appeared in 75 games and posted a 2.18 ERA. That would be his last season in the Nation’s Capital, as Clippard moved on to Oakland the following year.

    Tyler Clippard has a fastball that hovers in the mid-90’s, and with a career-strikeout rate of 10.0 he definitely has the tools to get opposing batters out. Clippard also has a very awkward delivery that can be deceptive to his opponents.

    Clippard earned just $1.5 million with the Blue Jays last season, so it’s plausible to see him signing a relatively cheap contract this offseason as well. If the Cincinnati Reds are looking for a consistent reliever who can give them 60-plus innings of relief work out of the pen, Clippard may be their guy. Keep a close watch on his name as the offseason unfolds.