Predicting the Cincinnati Reds post-trade deadline starting rotation

Cincinnati Reds Graham Ashcraft
Cincinnati Reds Graham Ashcraft / Eric Espada/GettyImages
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Luis Castillo got his first start for his new team on Wednesday afternoon in the Bronx and Tyler Mahle will likely make his Minnesota Twins debut later this week. The Cincinnati Reds traded both starters before yesterday's deadline.

With Castillo now with the Mariners and Mahle with the Twins, the Reds have a couple holes to fill. David Bell could continue to roll with a six-man rotation or return to the standard five-man.

With the Reds two best starters now over in the American League, the young arms will be looking to establish themselves heading into the end of the season. While a few many have already secured a spot in next year's rotation, not every player should be feeling so immune.

Mike Minor will remain in the Reds starting rotation for now.

For the time being, Mike Minor will likely be run out every fifth day by Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell. Minor struggled severely during his first several starts, but has seen better days of late. However, the 34-year-old is still 1-7 with a 6.31 ERA in 10 starts on the season.

The long ball has victimized Minor all season. To date, the southpaw has allowed 15 home runs. Only once this season has Minor not allowed a home run, and ironically it was in Yankee Stadium back on July 13th.

Minor handles his business quite well the first time through an opposing team's batting order. Minor has allowed of just .633 to the first nine hitters of a ball game. But after that, the wheels come off. But the second time an opponents sets his sights on Minor, the left is allowing batters to post a 1.118 OPS-against. The third time through the order, he's allowing an OPS of 1.209. Yikes!

The best place for Mike Minor, other than the waiver wire, would be the Cincinnati Reds bullpen. We know that Minor is not going to be on next year's team, so he could be used to piggyback off one of the Reds younger starters in order to keep the pitch counts low and their arms fresher.

The Reds trio of rookies will keep on throwing...for now.

Until they reach their innings limits, look for the trio of Hunter Greene, Graham Ashcraft, and Nick Lodolo to continue to toe the rubber every fifth day for Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell. These three pitchers are the future of the Reds rotation.

The question now becomes, who rises to the top? We've seen tremendous outings from all three pitchers this season. Greene broke into the big leagues throwing 100-plus mph, Lodolo was slowed by injuries but appears to be on the right track, and Ashcraft's talent and passion for the game just ooze through the television screen.

When will these three pitchers reach their limit? Greene is already over 100 innings pitched for the 2022 season. The flamethrower topped out at just over 100 last season while pitching in the minors, so it'll be curious to see how much longer Greene is able to go. He could be shutdown by the end of the month.

Ashcraft has register nearly 75 innings of work in the big leagues and the right-hander complied 32.2 innings at Triple-A this season as well. Ashcraft threw around 110 innings last year, so he's closing in on his last few starts as well.

Lodolo on the other hand was sidelined for over two months and is still below 40 innings pitched on the season. He did accumulate about 12 innings-worth of pitches during his rehab starts, and the southpaw threw just over 50 innings of work last season. Lodolo might be able to make it to the end of the year.

It's time for the Reds to see what Justin Dunn can do.

The Cincinnati Reds acquired Justin Dunn from the Seattle Mariners earlier this season as part of the return for Eugenio Suárez and Jesse Winker. Dunn has been sidelined for months with an injured shoulder and hasn't pitched in the major leagues since last summer.

Dunn has appeared in several rehab games and was recently re-assigned to Triple-A Louisville after his rehab stint expired. It's time for the Reds to see if Dunn has the chops to be part of next year's starting rotation or if they should develop the former New York Mets prospect as a reliever.

Dunn is just 26 years old, so there's plenty of time to see how he develops. Dunn will be arbitration eligible for the first time in his career after this season, but with an ERA of 5.28, it's doubtful that he'll make much more than the league minimum in 2023.

Dunn has totalled 21 innings in six starts at Triple-A Louisville, plus two innings a High-A Dayton during his rehab assignment. Dunn isn't a high-volume strikeout pitcher and usually pumps his fastball in there around 93 mph.

The Cincinnati Reds don't really have any other starting pitchers on the 40-man roster to turn to. Reiver Sanmartin seems to be thriving since moving to the bullpen and Vladimir Gutierrez is on the 60-day IL after undergoing Tommy John surgery. Connor Overton could be back soon and will probably take the place of one of the rookies later this season.

Next. Predicting the Reds post-trade deadline starting lineup. dark