Reds news: Tyler Stephenson sent down in favor of Wade Miley

ST LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 22: Wade Miley #22 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 22: Wade Miley #22 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /

Wade Miley will work out of the Reds bullpen.

It was bound to happen sooner or later. The Cincinnati Reds optioned Tyler Stephenson to the player pool and reinstated Wade Miley from the injured list. Stephenson quickly became a favorite among Cincinnati fans, but Reds Country will likely have to wait until next season to see the young catcher as a regular in the lineup.

Miley had been on the injured list with a left shoulder strain. This was the left-handers second trip to the IL this season after a groin injury kept him out of the rotation for a few starts. David Bell have previously talked about Miley’s role upon his return, and expects the veteran to be capable left-handed option out of the team’s bullpen.

The 2020 season is Wade Miley’s first in Cincinnati, though he’d previously worked with pitching coach Derek Johnson while with the Milwaukee Brewers in 2018. The southpaw signed a two-year/$15M contract with the Reds this past winter, and was slated to be part of the starting rotation. Miley is 0-3 this season with a 6.57 ERA and has pitched in just four games.

Over the last two seasons, Miley put up a 19-8 record with a 3.52 ERA in 49 starts while playing for the Brewers and Houston Astros. Though Miley has experience as a reliever, he hasn’t pitched out of the bullpen since his All-Star season in 2012, and even that was only for three games.

On the other end of the spectrum is Tyler Stephenson, who homered in his very first big league at-bat and has captured the attention of the Cincinnati faithful in recent weeks. Stephenson is 5-for-17 with two home runs and six RBIs in eight games. The 24-year-old started two games behind the plate and three as the team’s designated hitter.

With the return of Nick Senzel to the lineup, the Reds appeared to be a bit heavy in terms of outfielders, making Aristides Aquino a possible casualty upon Miley’s return. However, the team decided on Stephenson, as there appears to be no reason for the Reds to put their top young prospect behind the dish with Tucker Barnhart and Curt Casali on the roster.

Next. Nick Senzel needs more at-bats

Don’t worry, Tyler Stephenson is still in the player’s pool and can be recalled at anytime should one of the players on thee current roster succumb to injury. Stephenson will also undoubtedly be on the taxi squad heading to Minneapolis this weekend.