There are only 12 games remaining in the season, starting later today with a 3-game series in Chicago to take on the Cubs. But the Reds will be going with a new rotation starting tonight. Kevin Gausman, who the Reds acquired on August 5th by claiming him on waivers, will make his first start since joining Cincinnati as the team takes on the Cubs this evening.

Guasman isn’t replacing anyone in the rotation. But it does seem that there will be six pitchers in the rotation the rest of the season. C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic was the first to report that Gausman would be joining the rotation, and what it would look like late on Sunday.

Assuming this isn’t just a 1-time spot start for no apparent reason at all, here’s how the remaining schedule will look for the Cincinnati Reds:

Date Opponent Pitcher
16-Sep at Cubs Kevin Gausman
17-Sep at Cubs Sonny Gray
18-Sep at Cubs Tyler Mahle
19-Sep OFF OFF
20-Sep vs Mets Luis Castillo
21-Sep vs Mets Anthony DeSclafani
22-Sep vs Mets Trevor Bauer
23-Sep OFF OFF
24-Sep vs Brewers Kevin Gausman
25-Sep vs Brewers Sonny Gray
26-Sep vs Brewers Tyler Mahle
27-Sep at Pirates Luis Castillo
28-Sep at Pirates Anthony DeSclafani
29-Sep at Pirates Trevor Bauer

Kevin Gausman made 16 starts with the Braves this season before they placed him on waivers. Things didn’t go well for him as he posted a 6.19 ERA in 80.0 innings where he allowed 92 hits, 12 home runs, walked 27 hitters, and racked up 85 strikeouts. Since joining the Reds he’s pitched exclusively out of the bullpen where his 2-pitch repertoire has performed better. His ERA as a reliever is 4.02 in 15.2 innings where he’s walked just 3 batters, given up 2 home runs, 15 hits, and he’s struck out 22.

The Reds have a rather important decision to make with Kevin Gausman before December rolls around. He’s making $9.35M this season, and he’s going to be entering his final year of arbitration next year if he sticks around. What he will be paid in arbitration would make him one of the most expensive relievers in the game. His track record as a reliever simply isn’t there. As a starter he may not even have a spot with the team. The Reds would need to non-tender him for 2020 before December 1st in order to not be locked into arbitration (unless they could sign him to a deal prior to that time). Getting two starts isn’t useless, but the information it provides won’t be substantial, either. Especially given he’s been in the Majors since 2014 and there’s mountains of information already there.

Freddy Galvis update

On Saturday night Freddy Galvis injured his knee while swinging and had to leave the game. After the game was over he said that he was feeling fine and should be ready to play on Sunday. But that didn’t happen and it didn’t happen because overnight things changed. He noted before the game on Sunday that there was “some soreness”. Manager David Bell said he “thinks it’s going to be a days thing.” We’ll have to wait and see if he’s able to play later today.

32 Responses

  1. CFD3000

    With just two pitches, I don’t see how Gausman projects as a starter. He’s got to be behind Castillo, Gray, Bauer, and DeSclafani and probably behind Mahle and even Reed. At $10M plus next year he’s a very expensive reliever or sixth or seventh starter. Maybe he pitches really well in two starts and slots in nicely as part of a multi-player trade. But that salary and being just one more year from free agency makes me skeptical that he has that much value. Best case might be Derek Johnson works some magic with Gausman, the Reds cover his 2020 salary and he becomes a lights out setup guy. It will be interesting to see how the FO handles Kevin Gausman.

    • W Lackey

      Find another starting pitcher or 2 via trade, minors or FA

    • Max

      Sixth or seven starters are not going to help this team REDS need a LEAD OFF HITTER!!!!!!!

      • jon

        Exactly castillo,gray,bauer,disco and a 5th is not the problem. The BP and lack of hitting is the need.

  2. RedBB

    Bout time…Management is so slow to realize the obvious

  3. Ed

    I really wanted to take my daughter to see Sonny Gray start against the Mets on the 22nd, so I splurged on front row tickets near the dugout. now Bauer is getting that start. Oh well. I guess it’s the same basically. Sorta.

  4. Scott C

    Absolutely true. There has to be better pitching options and I guess I would be ok with Galvis at short but there are so many needs on offense for this team. We certainly do not need Galvis, Peraza, and Iglesias on the team. One of the three is OK but the is all and it is hard to see paying Galvis 5 million to be a back up. My fear is that keep one of the two of Galvis or Iglesias and Peraza as a backup because he will still be cheap.

  5. W Lackey

    Keep J. Iglesias and Galvis a good combo. Move Peraza, Barnhart get some catching help. Plus much more hitting from someone. Offense is awful for most of the Reds

    • Doug Gray

      Keeping Iglesias and Galvis makes the awful offense, awful, because they are both poor hitters.

      • Rick

        I just don’t get why you’ve posted several times that Iglesias is a poor hitter. He’s been a top shortstop all-around, a clutch hitter, and I’ll be very disappointed if the Reds don’t sign him for at least a few more years. He’s one of the brightest spots for the Reds this year.

      • Doug Gray

        Because HE IS a poor hitter.
        His OPS+, which is adjusted for the park he plays in, is 84. That means he’s 16% WORSE than the league average hitter. His wRC+ is 82. Which means that he’s 18% WORSE than the league average hitter.

        He’s not a good hitter. He’s not a bright spot for the Reds this year. He’s not a top all-around shortstop. He currently is 27th among shortstops in WAR (Fangraphs version).

        He’s had some clutch hits this year. Let that fudge the numbers upwards a little bit if you want to, I’ll allow it because even though it’s not repeatable as a skillset, it did happen and he shouldn’t be punished for the fact that he’s not likely to do it again moving forward. He’s still a below-average player.

      • MBS

        I love the stability Iglesias gives the D, but I am OK with Galvis as the SS. I have finally come around to moving Senzel back into the infield. Which means the Reds would need to target a CF. He did a good job in CF, but seems unlikely to become a great CF. Also, playing the infield should help mitigate his injuries.

      • Don

        agree Doug. Would rather see neither one than both. My fear is the team figures out how to keep both and the middle infield just does not get on base.

        Iglesias career numbers are better for average and OBP (> 20 points higher that Galvis), Galvis higher on slugging (12 points higher).

        Iglesias is a better fielder as well.

        Neither has come close to the Peraza 182 hits in 2018 as well.

        Peraza has about the same offensive stats as Iglesias for BA and OBP and almost the same slugging as Galvis. He will also 26 in 2020 and not 30.

        My ranking would be (all batting #8 in the lineup)
        Iglesias (mainly on defensee)
        Peraza (same offensive production)
        Galvis (not an upgrade over Peraza based on numbers).

  6. Mason Red

    The Reds are setting up their pitching rotation for the playoffs….oh…uhm….wait….never mind.

  7. TR

    The pickup of Galvis and Gausman is confusing to me. Is the waiver wire usually a part of a successful rebuild?

      • TR

        Thank you. That clears It up for me. But another question on my mind, as this season draws to a close, is; were the Reds ever really committed to a rebuild?

  8. RedNat

    and that is my problem with GABP. WE have to spend so much money on strike out pitchers that we have no money left to sign good position players. we are a small market team in a big market stadium!

    • Doug Gray

      The Reds are worth over a billion dollars. Maybe they should just spend some money.

  9. MBS

    I fail to see how 2 starts at the end of the year will be a deciding factor on retaining Gausman. Maybe it’s more about limiting the work load on the arms for the 2020 season.

    Castillo 18 season 31 starts, 169.2 innings
    Castillo 19 season 30 starts, 178.2 innings, 2 starts, 12 innings now remaining
    Gray 18 season 23 starts, 130.1 innings, and 7 appearances out of the pen
    Gray 19 season 29 starts, 163.2 innings, 2 starts, 11 innings now remaining
    Bauer 18 season 27 starts, 175.1 innings, 1 appearance out to the pen
    Bauer 19 season 33 starts, 206 innings, 2 starts, 12 innings remaining
    Disco 18 season 21 starts, 115.2 innings
    Disco 19 season 29 starts, 155.2 innings, 2 starts, 12 innings remaining

    These 4 guys are extremely important to a 2020 Reds team. The two extra starts might not saved over the starters may not seem like a lot, but they all have had major increases in use, plus it gives them each an extra day to rest between their final starts.

  10. FreeHouse

    The Reds main offseason target should be Nick Castallanos

    • Big Ed

      FreeHouse, I don’t know you or your family, but I would bet (sight unseen) that at least half the women in your family are better outfielders than Castellanos.

      When the Tigers came into Cincinnati to play a couple of years ago, I had seen that in some FanGraph metric that he was the worst outfielder in baseball. Then I saw him play in GABP and understood immediately. They report him to be better now, but he made Adam Dunn look like Roberto Clemente.

      I will take his bat, though.

  11. WillieG

    I wonder if Gausman and Johnson have already been working on a third pitch, and they now want to see him use it in a starters role

    • Big Ed

      I think so, too. Johnson would have seen Gausman while Gausman was pitching for LSU, and probably knows him pretty well. I have to believe that the front office conferred with Johnson before making the waiver claim on him.

      In Johnson we trust. And note that they are using Gausman in a meaningful game, against the Cubs, who need the win.

  12. Big Ed

    I’m with you, Sliotar. Gausman has a very good arm, and spending on him for one more year isn’t going to bust even the Reds’ bank.

    Stockpiling good arms is never a bad idea.

    • Mason Red

      He’s not a good arm. If he were he would still be in Atlanta. The Braves know a thing or two about good arms. He’s another Reds reclamation project.

  13. jon

    going to be an intersting off season. Will there be a major trade of Bauer or Suarez? Will team add a SS or CF. VIA FA. How many BP piesces will be added? Will galvis and igleseas (ss) be kept. Whos catching next year.

  14. JB

    Just totally blown away that people are complaining about the front office but are ok with Iglesias and Galvis. They are HORRIBLE! Like Doug has pointed out they are below average and have no place on this team. Move on! Maybe the Reds should call Oakland about Marcus Semien. He has 1 year left and then free agent. Oakland wont sign him. Maybe a sign and trade. Anything over the 2 we got.

    • roger garrett

      Had planned to be gone until the spring but just have to comment on the Iggy,Peraza and Galvis debate so here goes.Its insane for any of them to be back next year because all of them are just terrible hitters but we know what will happen.At least two or maybe all three will be on the 25 man roster and if so I won’t be here in 2020.I understand somebody has to play short so if it were my money it would be Galvis who when he does hit it,it goes farther then when the other two guys hit it.Always liked Gausman and his stuff can be at times electric but at 10 mil I would have to pass.

  15. Chris Holbert

    As a starter or reliever, I am not sure how you can justify Gausman for that much money. Gray’s deal I believe is for around 30 mil/ 3 yrs. Giving Gausman 10 mil means he is making virtually the same as Gray…there is a better way to spend that money…

  16. da bear

    Spending money is no recipe for success (unless you can afford to outspend the opposition like the Yankees or Dodgers). Being efficient is a recipe for success, no matter your financial status in life.

    The Reds from a financial standpoint are not worth a billion dollars unless you can demonstrate their cash flow is about $70MM per year, and that’s only because interest rates are as low as they are. Normal times, for an enterprise to be worth around $1B you want cash flow of $100MM.

    Their valuation is inflated by a ‘trophy wife’ sense of worth, dependent upon the next greater fool coming along to tell the world ‘I’ve made it’. This won’t last forever. The bubble valuations of sports enterprises might not burst soon, but will eventually settle down toward the same calculations used to value a company that makes bubble gum or ball bearings.