The Cincinnati Reds have seemingly lost two starting pitchers to free agency this year with both Trevor Bauer and Anthony DeSclafani testing the free agent waters. While it’s possible that the Reds could re-sign either of them, it’s quite unlikely they bring back Bauer due to what it will cost. The team also has some internal options to replace them with Tyler Mahle, Tejay Antone, Michael Lorenzen, prospect Nick Lodolo, and perhaps their newest addition – Jeff Hoffman. But free agency is also an option for the Reds, and according to Craig Mish of MLB Network, the Reds are looking at free agent and former Red Dan Straily.
The Reds sent Straily to Miami in January of 2017 after he made 31 starts and three relief appearances with a 14-8 record, a 3.76 ERA, and threw 191.1 innings for Cincinnati in 2016. The trade worked out quite well for the Reds, who picked up Luis Castillo in the deal. For Straily, things didn’t quite go as well. In Miami he posted a 4.20 ERA, which led to a 93 ERA+ (100 is league average) in 56 starts. In 2019 he made his way to Baltimore and that’s where things went bad. Straily made eight starts and six relief appearances and posted a 9.82 ERA in just 47.2 innings with 22 walks and 22 home runs allowed. He was picked up by Philadelphia later that year, but pitched in Triple-A for them and never got back to the Major Leagues.
In 2020 Straily pitched for the Lotte Giants in the KBO in Korea. The 31-year-old dominated, posting a 2.50 ERA over 31 starts with 205 strikeouts and 51 walks in 194.2 innings pitched. That performance has drawn the eyes of multiple teams in Major League Baseball – along with the Reds, Mish is reporting that the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Angels are both also showing interest in the starter and that Straily will decide whether he will come back to the US to pitch within the next week.
A deal for Straily would likely be one that help fill out the back of the rotation for the Reds and provide some depth, allowing the likes of Tejay Antone and or Michael Lorenzen to settle into a role in the bullpen where they could pitch multiple innings in more high leverage situations. Monetarily, the deal would seem to be one that wouldn’t require a long term commitment or a lot of money – but that’s also just speculation by this particular writer.