Reds' rainout may have settled lingering rotation questions

Maybe canceling Thursday's game was a good thing.
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Martinez
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Martinez / Emilee Chinn/Cincinnati Reds/GettyImages

The weather did not cooperate for the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday afternoon. With rain and storms in the forecast for most of the day, the Reds postponed the series finale against the Milwaukee Brewers. The game has been moved to late-August as part of a split doubleheader.

But David Bell will not push back any of his scheduled starters ahead of the team's road trip to the South Side of Chicago. Cincinnati begins a three-game series with the Chicago White Sox on Friday, and Bell will go with a rotation of Andrew Abbott, Nick Lodolo, and Graham Ashcraft.

Nick Martinez was scheduled to pitch on Thursday, but will now be passed over in the rotation. Did the rainout effectively solve the Reds rotation questions? Will Martinez now head to the bullpen?

Reds' rainout may have settled lingering rotation questions

Most Reds fans assumed this would be the case, right? When Lodolo was deemed healthy enough to return to the Reds starting rotation, Martinez was likely to be the odd-man out. The veteran has experience as a starter and reliever, and now that he didn't have to pitch on Thursday, perhaps Bell could piggyback Martinez behind Lodolo on Saturday to help ease the lefty back into the rotation.

Martinez hasn't been exceptional during his first two starts of the season, but he hasn't been abysmal either. Martinez owns a 7.20 ERA through his first two starts with the Reds. The 33-year-old has nine punch outs through 10 innings of work, but has allowed an abundance of hits (14) so far this season.

On Saturday, Reds fans can expect the team to option Carson Spiers back to Triple-A Louisville and activate Lodolo from the IL. It'll mark the southpaw's first major league start since early-May of last season. The Reds can then move Martinez into the role that Spiers filled earlier this week when he logged four innings and helped give the bullpen a break.

Giving Martinez deeper stints in games than the other relievers will keep him sharp in the event the Reds need someone to make a spot start, while also providing extra rest for the other seven relievers on the team's roster. Look for Lodolo to start on Saturday, Martinez to move to the bullpen, and Spiers to head back to the Derby City.

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