While this may be viewed as a bit of a blow to the overall depth of the Cincinnati Reds pitching staff, the truth of the matter is that there's unlikely to be any room for Gutierrez heading into next season.
Not only do the Reds have an abundance of pitchers already on the 40-man roster, there are more on the way.
Reds pitching depth takes minor hit after this pitcher elects free agency
Now, as the old adage goes, you can never have enough pitching. The Cincinnati Reds found that out the hard way in 2023 when several of team's starters landed on the injured list for extended periods of time.
The Reds lost several of their starters to the injured list in 2023. Nick Lodolo anbd Hunter Greene missed multiple months of action, Graham Ashcraft finished the season on the IL, and Vladimir Gutierrez and Justin Dunn never made it onto a major league mound.
Gutierrez marks the second loss among international signings the Cincinnati Reds made in 2016. If, as it's assumed, the Reds move on from Jose Barrero this offseason, that'll be the top three international signees to be let go by the Reds.
But the Reds already have enough pitching depth to weather the loss the of Vladimir Gutierrez. Plus, it's very likley that Cincinnati opts to add another starter or two during the offseason via a trade or through free agency.
The Cincinnati Reds could always attempt to re-sign Vladimir Gutierrez during the offseason, but one would assume that opting not to accept the outright assignment was a signal that the right-hander believes he'll have a better chance with a new organization in 2024.