Cincinnati Reds: Has Anthony DeSclafani started his final game?

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 27: Anthony DeSclafani #28 of the Cincinnati Reds reacts after giving up a three run home run. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 27: Anthony DeSclafani #28 of the Cincinnati Reds reacts after giving up a three run home run. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

Anthony DeSclafani was left out of the Reds rotation versus the White Sox.

David Bell set his rotation for the weekend series versus the Chicago White Sox, and Anthony DeSclafani‘s name was nowhere to be found. Tyler Mahle started Friday’s opener against the AL Central leaders and will be followed today by Trevor Bauer. Michael Lorenzen will get the ball to start Sunday’s finale. Has Disco started his last game for the Cincinnati Reds?

If he has, that’s certainly not the way that Disco wanted to leave town. In his last outing, the Reds right-hander went 4.2 innings, allowed four runs on seven hits including two home runs. Thankfully, the team overcame DeSclafani’s rough outing to defeat the Pittsburgh Pirates 9-4.

To say that 2020 has been a disappointment for Anthony DeSclafani would be a massive understatement. The New Jersey native began the season on the 10-day injured list, which is nothing new for DeSclafani. Last season marked the first time since 2015 that he pitched in more than 30 games.

However, after returning from the IL, Disco looked phenomenal in his first two starts. Spanning a total of 11 innings, the right-hander didn’t allow a single run and struck out eight batters. Things looked as though they were moving in the right direction, but then the wheels fell off.

In his last five starts, Anthony DeSclafani has gone 0-2 with an 11.57 ERA. Disco’s nemesis, the long ball, has come back to haunt him, as he’s allowed seven home runs over 18.2 innings. Opposing batters own an 1.154 OPS in those five starts after being held to just a .347 OPS in his first two starts of the 2020 season.

According to’s Mark Sheldon, Reds skipper David Bell is considering a four-man rotation for the final week of the season. That rotation would include the likes of Mahle, Lorenzen, Bauer and Luis Castillo. It sounds like DeSclafani may be headed to the bullpen. Here’s a quote from Bell via

"“There’s no question he’s going to factor in,” Bell said. “A lot of it depends on Sonny (Gray). I think no matter what, at this point of the season and the rest of the way, some of our starters that have typically been starters will need to transition to pitch really meaningful innings out of the bullpen.”"

If I were in Disco’s shoes, I’d be preparing for a trip to the bullpen. Being that DeSclafani was supplanted by Michael Lorenzen in the starting rotation this weekend, the 30-year-old seems destined for a spot among the Cincinnati Reds relievers.

I would even go so far to say that Anthony DeSclafani may be left off the playoff roster all together if the Cincinnati Reds make it to the postseason. Bell could go with a potential rotation of Gray, Castillo, Bauer and Mahle, making it pointless to carry DeSclafani on the playoff roster.

Next. Mahle is the key for the Reds down the stretch

DeSclafani will enter this offseason for the first time as a free agent, and with the likes of Mahle and Tejay Antone emerging as potential starters in 2021, the likelihood of the Cincinnati Reds red-signing DeSclafani appear slim to none. Cincinnati also have Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo ascending through the minor leagues with their eyes on a spot in the rotation.