Not that there was much of the season remaining, but Derek Dietrich’s season came to an early end on Friday when he had shoulder surgery. From Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer:
There was no damage to his rotator cuff or other major areas, and the arthroscopic surgery isn’t expected to affect him in the offseason.
Dietrich’s left shoulder bothered him throughout the second half of the season. He went on the 10-day injured list (IL) with left shoulder inflammation last month and missed 16 games.
This brings up a lot of questions, both for Derek Dietrich and for the Cincinnati Reds. In the first half of the season Dietrich was hitting home runs like he could see the future and was doing his best Aristides Aquino in August impression. But after hitting three home runs in a game in late May, everything changed. The home runs stopped coming. The hits stopped coming, too. Well, except the hits that were him being hit by a pitch, that is.
From the end of May through the end of the season, Derek Dietrich had 15 hits. He was hit by 17 pitches in that same time frame. The ability to hit the ball completely went away. And that puts the Reds in a tough situation. They will need to offer him a contract for next season and head off to arbitration, where he likely gets a raise. Or they could non-tender him a contract and he will become a free agent.
If they believe that the shoulder injury is what led to his complete collapse post-May, then there’s a chance they decide to bring him back for 2020. But it probably won’t be a very easy decision to make if that’s the case. There’s never been a stretch of his career like what he experienced this year after May ended. The decision must be made at the end of November. That means there’s time for the organization to weigh their options here.
Lucas Sims to start tonight
Trevor Bauer was sick earlier this week and had his start pushed back to the final game of the year. That moved up the Reds planned “bullpen day” to tonight. It was announced after the game on Friday night that Lucas Sims would be getting the start for the team against Pittsburgh.
A new franchise record
In the final home game of the year the Reds set a new franchise record for most home runs in a season when Aristides Aquino hit his 18th of the year. It was the Reds 223rd homer of the season, breaking the all-time franchise record that was previously set in 2005. For a little bit of context, though, the 2019 Minnesota Twins entered yesterday as the all-time record holder for most homers in a season by a team. They were sitting on 301. As I type this they no longer hold the record despite hitting two more home runs last night. The New York Yankees hit FIVE last night and jumped ahead of the Twins, 305-303. That baseball sure is something else this year.