In a weird announcement at 2:30pm the Cincinnati Reds announced that they’ve optioned right-handed pitcher Jose De Leon and catcher Tyler Stephenson to Triple-A Louisville. Those moves leave the Reds with 48 players “in big league camp”. Of course, those last four words are weird, because spring training is shut down and it has been for several days now. And no one has the slightest clue as to when things will resume, either.

For Tyler Stephenson, who is the Reds #3 prospect and was added to the 40-man roster this past offseason, he wasn’t competing for a spot on the roster unless someone got hurt. With Tucker Barnhart, Curt Casali, and Kyle Farmer providing a third option – Stephenson was slated to head to Triple-A at some point if everyone remained healthy. But that didn’t stop the 23-year-old from going out on the field in the 12 games he saw action in and try to change someone’s mind. The catcher hit .375/.500/.750 with three doubles, a home run, four walks, and just one strikeout in 22 plate appearances.

Jose De Leon only pitched in three games this spring with Cincinnati. One of the newer Reds, the 27-year-old was looking to grab onto a spot in the bullpen, or perhaps the rotation if a spot opened up. But he only threw 2.2 innings, allowing two runs on two hits, a hit batter, two walks, and he struck out four batters.

7 Responses

  1. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I believe, if Tyler keeps hitting at AAA, we are going to see him up here this season. And, we will unload Casali or Barnhardt to the first team needing a C.

    • Steve Schoenbaechler

      I mean, I can’t help thinking Tyler is “more ready than not”. Maybe a bit more seasoning, sure. But, like I said, if he is still hitting at AAA, I believe we see him up here, getting significant game time, not “end-of-the-season-cleanup detail”.

  2. CallowayPost

    It may have been just a situation where Tyler and Jose might’ve needed to head back before any more restrictions might be placed on national travel. Maybe give them a chance to get settled in as far as living arrangements.

    • Kevin Patrick

      Sometimes you have to chime in just to say that you agree with someone.

      • TR

        Makes sense to me since I’m not an expert, just a fan.

  3. CFD3000

    There’s so much uncertainty in general right now that it makes some sense to give players who are clearly not going to make an Opening Day MLB roster a little certainty. I’m not reading anything more than that into this announcement, I’m just surprised there weren’t more names on the list.

  4. RojoBenjy

    In other news, the truth comes to light from the player himself in an interview with the Boston Globe that is mentioned at MLBTR:

    “Second base is my most comfortable position. I played a lot of second base in the minors. I know I can help this team (Boston) playing there,” Peraza said.

    So why was SS supposed to be his starting role with Cincinnati in 2019 until Scooter went down and they put Iglesias there? As it turns out, Peraza got to play his most comfortable position (and given his performance there that’s still a head-scratcher).