Reds: Michael Lorenzen is injured player Cincinnati misses the most

CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 26: Michael Lorenzen #21 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 26: Michael Lorenzen #21 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Reds have had one glaring issue all season long. That issue has been the disappointing struggles of the bullpen. With Lucas Sims and Tejay Antone both recently dealing with injuries, the bullpen could use the return of a fresh arm. The Reds desperately need Michael Lorenzen to return to the bullpen.

All signs point to Lorenzen returning to the team after the All-Star break. Lorenzen has yet to make his season debut since suffering a shoulder strain late in spring training. An unfortunate injury for the 29-year-old right-hander who was competing for a spot in the starting rotation before suffering the injury.

The Reds need Michael Lorenzen to be a force out of the bullpen.

When Lorenzen finally returns from his time on the injured list, he will have a lot to prove to himself and the organization. Lorenzen is in the final year of his contract and is coming off a tough year where he posted his third-highest ERA as a member of the Reds at 4.28.

Even though last season was difficult for everyone, Michael Lorenzen is a competitor and definitely wants to show that last season is in the past. Fans are hopeful he is ready for the challenge this year.

The Reds bullpen continues to struggle with the highest ERA of any team in the league at 5.64 and  the relief corps has given up 49 home runs, which is the most in the league. The bullpen is second in walks issued (154) this year, trailing only division rival St. Louis. Lorenzen faced 147 batters last season, giving up 3 home runs and walking 17.

With so many unanswered questions from the Cincinnati Reds bullpen and injuries beginning to pile up for the unit, Lorenzen could be competing for the closer spot upon his return to the team. Lucas Sims seems to have that role when healthy, recording seven saves in nine attempts.

However, Sims is now dealing with an elbow injury that has put him on the 10-day IL. If that injury continues to be an issue, Lorenzen does have experience closing games. The hulking right-hander has recorded 10 saves with the club during his major league career.

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The Reds need Lorenzen to come back and bring a fresh arm to the team’s beleaguered bullpen. The last time Reds fans saw Mikey Biceps on the mound was in Game 2 of the Wild Card round against Atlanta last season. Lorenzen gave up one hit and struck out two in his final appearance of 2020.