Dallas Keuchel was designated for assignment by the Chicago White Sox after the former Cy Young Award-winner struggled beyond belief this season.
While adding a veteran left-hander to the rotation could help offset the innumerable number of injuries the Cincinnati Reds have suffered this season, adding Keuchel should be off the table.
Prior to the 2019 season, Cincinnati was rumored to be interested in adding Keuchel to their starting rotation. Instead, the Reds made a trade with the New York Yankees for Sonny Gray and Keuchel sat out for half of the season before eventually signing with the Atlanta Braves.
The Reds should avoid Dallas Keuchel at all costs.
Dallas Keuchel, now 34 years old and in the final year of his three-year/$55.5M contract, will soon become a free agent. No team is going to make a waiver claim and take on Keuchel's remaining 2022 salary.
Much like the Cincinnati Reds with Shogo Akiyama, the Los Angeles Angels with Justin Upton, and the New York Mets with Robinson Cano, the Chicago White Sox will eat the remainder of Keuchel's contract.
The Reds should avoid Keuchel for two reasons. First, he's not pitching well at all. This season, Keuchel is 2-7 with a 7.88 ERA in right starts. The southpaw has just 20 strikeouts in 30.2 innings of work and a WHIP of 2.156. Keuchel has the same number of walks as he does punch outs.
Additionally, Cincinnati has way too many good, young pitching prospects that can get invaluable experience in 2022. We've already seen Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo, and Graham Ashcraft make their debuts over the last two months. Pitchers like Andrew Abbott and Brandon Williamson may get their call later this season as well.
Back in December of 2018, I would've stumped very hard for the Cincinnati Reds to sign Dallas Keuchel. In his previous four seasons, Keuchel posted a 3.37 ERA, won two Gold Gloves, and a Cy Young.
But Keuchel is not the same pitcher that he was four years ago. Over the last year-plus with the White Sox, Keuchel is 11-14 with a 5.71 ERA. The Reds have enough starting pitchers in the organization, even if Tyler Mahle and Luis Castillo are eventually traded.