While there has been no move made yet, it appears that Cincinnati Reds top prospect Hunter Greene is about to join the team’s 60-man player pool. On Sunday night he shared that he was in Cincinnati – and well, I don’t believe he’s here to eat LaRosa’s and do some sight seeing.
If you recall, Hunter Greene was the #2 overall pick in the 2017 Major League Baseball draft, but was widely considered the top talent in the draft. The starting pitcher would routinely throw 100 MPH at a 17-year-old in high school. In 2018 he pitched in Low-A for the Dayton Dragons, and after a tough first few weeks he went on a dominant run through the Midwest League before heading to the Futures Game where he hit 103 MPH. But shortly after that he injured his elbow.
At first, his plan was to go through treatments and rehab, much like both Anthony DeSclafani and Michael Lorenzen had, to avoid Tommy John surgery. Things had been going well and he came into spring training of 2019 just a little behind schedule – but he was on target and was throwing off of the mound. But in the final outing during spring training he injured his elbow again and opted for Tommy John surgery in early April.
14 months later, after rehab and recovery, Hunter Greene was once again throwing 102 MPH – as he showed off in a bullpen session during the baseball shut down last month. Guys that throw 102 MPH seem healthy and ready to pitch, right? Well, when the Reds unveiled their player pool roster, Greene wasn’t there. It got some people asking questions about why that was given that many other teams were including top prospects – some even as young as 17-years-old – in their player pools simply to get development time. But Greene had an argument that he might actually be able to help in some fashion this season given a triple-digit fastball and a plus slider, even though he hadn’t pitched above Low-A and missed all of 2019.
But fast forward a little less than three weeks after baseball has resumed camps, and Hunter Greene is now in Cincinnati for an unannounced (as of now) reason. Maybe the team won’t need any reinforcements this season – though that seems very unlikely, even in a 2-month long season. But if they do, adding an arm like Hunter Greene’s isn’t going to be the worst option that a team has.
A Reds scrimmage no-hitter
The Cincinnati Reds wrapped up their Summer Series on Sunday. Tucker Barnhart and Curt Casali drafted their own teams for the match up and they also played the manager for each team. Team Turnup went on to win the game 4-0. But that wasn’t the story. No, the story was that the green-jersey wearing Team Turnup crew tossed a combined no-hitter against Tuck’s Claws behind Sonny Gray.
Sonny Gray struck out four batters in his 4.0 hitless innings before turning the game over to prospect Ryan Hendrix. The young right-handed reliever made quick work of Josh VanMeter and Phillip Ervin, before some trouble began brewing. Tyler Stephenson walked, and then an error put runners on 1st and 2nd but after getting to a full count, Hendrix struck out Nick Senzel to end the threat and keep the no-hitter alive. Pedro Strop came out for the 6th inning and struck out Derek Dietrich, Eugenio Suarez, and Freddy Galvis. Raisel Iglesias came out for the final inning on the day and got Mike Moustakas to line out to second base, a ground out to first, and a strikeout to end the game.
This week’s schedule for the Reds
Today there is a light practice at Great American Ballpark in the afternoon. On Tuesday the Reds will welcome in the Detroit Tigers for two exhibition games. They’ll play on both Tuesday and Wednesday evenings – as of now it appears both games will be radio only. Thursday will be a day with no games, and then on Friday the regular season will get started with Opening Day between the Tigers and the Reds at 6:40pm ET at Great American Ballpark.