Ian Gibaut was an absolute bulldog in 2023. Picked up off waivers in 2022, Gibaut showed flashes last season coming out of the Cincinnati Reds bullpen.
But I don't think anyone could've predicted how well the right-hander performed this past season. Gibaut led the team and was second in the league, behind only Arizona Diamondbacks reliever Miguel Castro, in appearances.
Gibaut, an absolute workhorse for manager David Bell in 2023, solidified his spot in the Reds bullpen heading into next season after giving it his all each and every time he stepped onto the mound.
Reds report card: Grading Ian Gibaut's dependable 2023 season
It would be unfair to call Ian Gibaut the Cincinnati Reds best reliever in 2023. Alexis Diaz made it to the All-Star Game as the team's closer, and no one had a better ERA than Sam Moll. But Gibaut led all Cincinnati relievers in appearances, innings pitched while also recording three saves.
While Gibaut's best ability may have been his reli-ability, the right-hander also posted solid numbers across the board. Gibaut did get touched up to the tune of a .245 batting average against and allowed the most hits among all Reds' relievers. But when you're handed the ball as much as Gibaut was, that's going to happen.
Gibaut inherited 35 runners this season and allowed 12 to score. That comes out to 34.3-percent, and while that's not aas good as Lucas Sims and Buck Farmer, Gibaut was able to hold his own with those who rank among the best in the National League in that category.
Ian Gibaut was one of three to four relievers whom David Bell would rely on to bridge the gap from the starter to closer Alexis Diaz. Along with Sims, Farmer, and Fernando Cruz, Gibaut was called upon to to help maintain the lead, not just keep the game close.
When Gibaut was selected to be part of the Cincinnati Reds Opening Day roster, I had my doubts. But heading into 2024, I have no doubt that Gibaut will be sitting in the bullpen with the rest of the Reds relievers on March 28th against the Washington Nationals.