The Cincinnati Reds announced earlier this afternoon that they have picked up right-handed pitcher Kevin Gausman off of waivers. He had previously been playing with the Atlanta Braves.
For Kevin Gausman, his last appearance came just the other day in a start against Cincinnati. It’s been a tough season for the right-hander, who now has an ERA of 6.19 on the season through 16 starts. He’s missed bats, racking up 85 strikeouts, and he’s had a solid walk rate, too – giving up just 27 of them in 80.0 innings. But he’s been very hittable, and like the majority of baseball, has struggled a little bit in allowing home runs.
The Reds have stated that he will be heading to the bullpen for now with the club. There’s no roster move that’s been made at this point, so who he will be replacing is unknown as I type this.
There’s some potential good signs that Gausman is due for a turn-around. As noted above, he’s got quality rates in both the walk and strikeout columns. His batting average on balls in play is higher than you would expect for most Major League pitchers. And his stranded runner rate is abysmally low.
The bullpen may be a bit of a better spot for Kevin Gausman than the rotation. As a right-handed two-offering guy, it’s very tough to succeed as a starter with that repertoire. He’ll mix in a splitter along with his fastball, but those two pitches make up 98% of his pitches thrown this season. He will occasionally throw a slider. That could be a bit interesting to keep an eye on, as prior to 2019 he had thrown his slider 10-20% of the time, while this season he’s basically scrapped it entirely. Perhaps Derek Johnson and the Reds analytical staff has something up their sleeve when it comes to Gausman’s repertoire.