The Cincinnati Reds have outrighted outfielder Delino DeShields to Triple-A Louisville. It was never announced that he was designated for assignment, but apparently he was and today he cleared waivers.

Cincinnati picked up Delino DeShields from the Boston Red Sox on August 31st. He had been with them in the minor leagues for the previous few weeks after they had acquired him from the Texas Rangers on August 4th. DeShields had spent the entire 2021 season in the minors prior to landing with the Reds at the end of August. Cincinnati called him up and he played in 25 games down the stretch and he performed well in the role he was asked to fill.

The Reds outfield had been depleted by both injuries and by poor performance. Delino DeShields came in and filled a role as a part-time outfielder and in his 58 plate appearances hit .255/.375/.426 with 5 doubles, a home run, 2 steals, 9 walks, and 11 strikeouts. He would start 10 games in center and come off of the bench in 8 others to take over the position. He also started in left field for 3 games with Cincinnati.

The move puts the Cincinnati 40-man roster at 39 players, but also includes 3 players that are on the 60-day injured list.

38 Responses

  1. ryan

    Hmm, how does those stats compare to Aquino’s?

    • Corey D

      May I suggest baseball reference or fan graphs?

  2. Bet on Red

    Clearing the 40 man for the offseason it seems. I dont think we have seen the last of him

    • Jim Walker

      If the figures on BBRef are accurate DeShields is within a month of having his 6 years of MLB service time, counting the time earned with the Reds, to automatically be an MLB level free agent this offseason.

      It also looks like he had never been outrighted previously as he apparently was non tendered last off season then subsequently signed a minor league deal this year and was not at MLB in 2021until he joined the Reds.

      Mix all of this together and it probably was in the Reds best interest to outright him now versus waiting to do it later.

      • redsfan4040

        He would have to get to 172 days of service time, BBREF had him at 5.109. He wasn’t up with the Reds 63 days. He’ll probably end at something like 5.142 service time.

      • Jim Walker

        RF4040> even on a 1st outright, DeShields didn’t need the full 6 years to refuse and become a free agent. I believe that choice kicks in for the player at 3+ years of MLB service time.

        This is part of the reason the timing of this move seems so curious to me. They could have carried him over the winter and controlled him for 2022 by offering an MLB contract; but, probably knew all along ]they did not intend to which begs the question why outright him now?
        Unless I misunderstand the minor league free agency rules, his combination of minor league and MLB service time makes him a minor league free agent at the end of that contract year. Once he cleared waivers and was outrighted, that put him back under minor league rules.

    • David

      Yeah, but the first of him was pretty unimpressive.

      • greenmtred

        Small sample size, but .375 OBP is nothing to sneeze at. I agree that the Reds need a better-hitting CF, but they could do worse–quite a bit worse–than Deshields as a 4th or 5th outfielder.

  3. DaveCT

    DeShields is a decent 26th man. Speed, CF defense, a little pop in his bat. Replaceable, but positive history in the last couple months. I’m fine if we hold onto him for 22

    • Redsvol

      100% agree. Decent 26th man – much better than Mark Payton, Josh Vanmeter or Travis Jankowski. It will be interesting to see whether TJ Friedl or Deshields makes the ’22 roster. I think one should because our outfield defense will probably be rough and need defensive replacement many nights.

  4. LDS

    I must say I’m pleasantly surprised. It doesn’t mean anything at this point, e.g., Farmer. But we’ll be optimistic for the moment.

    • Jim Walker

      Keep in mind what Doug pointed out a couple of days ago about the potential lockout. If there is one, minor league play will go on.

      As near as I can tell, assuming DeShields has accepted or eventually does accept the outright (he has the service time to refuse it), he is now likely going to be a minor league free agent versus being an MLB free agent if he cleared waivers and was released. This presumably would make him eligible to play at AAA while guys protected on the 40 man roster but likely to have been on option will presumably stuck in limbo by a lockout.

      Moves like this might be something to keep an eye out for in the coming days and weeks.

      • LDS

        Thanks. Makes sense but I’d think the Reds have better options. But that’s why I read you guys. I don’t have time to keep up with the minutiae. I will say though that a lockout isn’t in the owners or the players best interest. After 2019 and the COVID restrictions, fans are getting restless.

  5. Mark

    This move is Either clearing a spot for Friedl or Barrero to be our starting CF in 22’

    • Luke J

      I think their plan has always been for Senzel to be the starting CF in 2022. Whether that happens or not is another question.

  6. Michael B. Green

    I think CIN is going to trade for Robles or Buxton

    • redsfan4040

      I would be very open to seeing Buxton play for Cincinnati.

    • LDS

      Interesting but what would they have to give up? And wasn’t Robles sent back down this year? Buxton a FA after next season with a history of injuries? I’d like to see the Reds score some good young players but my head tells me it won’t happen. Maybe Senzel for Robles. Maybe that works.

      • redsfan4040

        I don’t know if Minnesota would, but I’d trade Nick Senzel for Buxton. 4 years of Senzel, and the twins can wait to see if change of scene helps him out. We know what Buxton can be when healthy, and the Reds, I think, are ready to compete again next year.

      • LDS

        Works for me. But likely costs too much and soon to be FA. Bob is cheap.

      • MK

        Can you really see Washington doing that? Senzel has little value to the Reds let alone the Nationals. Nick’s trade value ship has sailed, as DeShields’ 2021 and career stats are better and since he passed through waivers with no takers it tells you Senzel’s value. Two high first round picks that have been huge disappointments.

  7. Max BRAGG

    Be careful Reds fans this another move to cloud your vision. They have to address CLOSER and 3rd base not a OF position!!!!

    • Luke J

      This isn’t necessarily about the OF, it’s about roster spots.

      • Jim Walker

        Agree, it is the timing that is curious to me.

      • MK

        Maybe out of respect for Sr. they are giving Jr. the most time possible to make a better deal for himself elsewhere at Jr.’s request.

  8. Bet on Red

    Luke J is right, remember lockout or no lock out, those three on the 60 day IL need to come off before they can go back on next year if necessary. We do need two more roster spots opened

  9. Rick Pearson Jr

    Cincinnati has a lot of stuff they need to get fixed and cleared up before spring training. Let’s just start in the Infield first, first base pretty much set. I would say second base is set. Now what are you going to do is shortstop ? Kyle farmer played absolutely outstanding and I personally think he deserves it. Now what do you do with Jose Barreiro ? Let’s move over to Third Base you have Suarez, and then you have Moustakas? Okay what are you going to do ? Let’s go behind the plate at Catcher, you have Barnhart, and you have Stevenson find one you like ? So you see the Reds have a multitude of questions that need to be answered and we haven’t even touched the Outfield so, the bullpen, or starting pitchers

    • Dean Rock

      First base is not set. Votto has proven he can’t hit lefties the past 3 seasons. We need a good RH bat at first base. Looks like it needs to come outdlside tge irganization. I want Stephenson catching vs. lefties, so he’s not the best platoon option at first.

      • Rick Pearson Jr

        Votto will be the first baseman they will use him and just give him an occasional day off unless he gets hurt yes Stephenson will be the basically every day catcher I don’t see Barnhart getting back. Now what are you going to do with what everybody was saying Jose is the upcoming shortstop if that is the case where is Kyle farmer? Now problem at 3rd unless the national league goes to the universal DH. Then I guess you can switch out Suarez and Moustakas. The Outfield truly is in shambles I don’t think Cincinnati can afford Nick Castellanos. The owners are too tight. Shogo akiyama they need to cut ties with him. Jesse Winker he is a good ball player when healthy but you could say the same with Nick senzel what are you going to do with him. What about Tyler naquin. Max Schrock. Friedel probably has option for AAA. I would let Aquino go if he is out of options which I think he is so there is a whole lot of work to be done before next season the front office has their work cut out for them

  10. Michael B. Green

    CIN’S 40MR currently has 43 players, if you include the DL60 guys. Once the Deshields outright is official, CIN is down to 42.

    Of that, 22 are pitchers. Givens and Lorenzen are F/A’s. Garrett and Hoffman are non-tender candidates. Bailey and/or C. Perez could get outrighted with the potential of landing minor contracts with invites to ST. Wilson’s complicated option could end up with free agency for him. That would potentially reduce the number of pitchers to 15. That would create a need for 5-7 new pitchers.

    Hunter Greene is absolutely 1 of them as he needs added to the 40MR after the WS. With Michael Byrne getting invested to the AZFL and possessing 3 option years, I’m guessing he gets added as well. That gets us back to 17.

    That creates a need to add 3-5 pitchers. A closer, 2 LHRP, and perhaps 2 RP’s with options.

    The current roster has 3 catchers. I think Barnhart will walk to free agency. I also think Kolzsvary will get outrighted and then ink a minor league deal with an invite to ST. That will create a need for a catcher. I’m banking on Manny Pina but we’ll see. Post-season experience and a culture of winning should serve as the primary focus. Need someone to compliment Stephenson too as he threw out just 19% of base stealers this year.

    The current roster has 10 IF. Cabrera will head to free agency. With Schrock solidifying a role, I could see Blandino outrighted with the hope of inking him to a minor league deal and an invite to ST. Someone could snag him though. Seems like the Angels do that everytime we post someone.

    The current OF roster is at 8. 7 if you account for Deshields’ outright. I think Aquino will get outrighted too and hopefully land a minor league contract with an invite to ST. Castellanos will likely opt out. It will be interesting to see if CIN buys out Akiyama’s contract and releases him. Assuming he says, then we need around 3 OF. One has to be Castellanos, Garcia or someone of that caliber. The other 2 are likely OF’s with options – similar to Heineman last year (not this year – I think he is out of options).

    CIN has very few players that it has to add to the 40MR from the farm this Winter. That should mean that they are busier in free agency and in the trade market this year.

    • Jim Walker

      I don’t think Kolozsvary is going anywhere. He is the 3rd catcher next year in waiting at AAA. After his high profile work with Olympic team, it would be hugely surprising for him to clear waivers required to be outrighted.

      • Rick Pearson

        I would definitely let Amir Garrett walk, also Michael Lorenzen has proven to be injury-prone let him go, definitely need to do something Mike Moustakas if they had the universal DH, that might work for him, what are you going to do at shortstop Kyle farmer I believe he has earned the right. But what are you going to do with Jose? Outfield what’s up with Nick senzel? What are you going to do then you also have akiyama, Tyler naquin, Schrock, friedel, I would let Aquino go at this point he is a strikeout machine. Barnhart probably let him go I hope and pray we get Nick Castellanos back

    • Dean Rock

      Good post. Im hoping the Reds get slme Japanese team to buy back ShoGo. He has no value to any MLB team. Dick Williams got us Pedro Strop, Moose, Shogo, Castellanos and Miley in his 2019 offseason spending spree. Missed on 3 of 5. Badly.

  11. Michael B. Green

    I think CIN could look at acquiring 1 of the following OF”s with options:

    Edward Olivares KC
    Jake Myers HOU
    Derek Hill DET
    Mark Payton NYM
    Corey Ray MIL
    Jacob Robson DET
    Luis Gonzalez SF

  12. Michael B. Green

    Absent a trade, I think CIN’s IF for their 40MR is set:


    From the Team’s pure future, Farmer will need to adopt a UT role. Playing Barrero out of position works only if you are in the post-season and that did not happen. We are better off committing to Barrero as our SS and use Farmer all over the field, knowing he can definitely cover SS in stretches if Barrero struggles. I think Farmer played through a lot of pain the second half of the year and managing that better might give us the 5-7 extra wins it will take to win the division.

    This IF roster works if there is a DH. I’m a NL guy and I absolutely hate the DH, but CIN is easily one of the best-equipped teams to convert.

    This IF is thin on speed. Wished teams cared about that more. Barrero and India represent any team speed of the IF. That perhaps just pushes any speed focus to the OF roster. That in turn adds value for Friedl and whomever we pick up over the offseason.

  13. Michael B. Green

    CIN’s OF will need careful construction. Assuming they carry 8 and not 7 on their 40MR, I could see this roster:

    LF Winker
    CF Senzel or Trade (Robles or Buxton)
    RF Free Agent (Castellanos or Garcia)

    Friedl is likely going to get one of those spots as he has plenty of options.
    Naquin earned a spot but is strictly a platoon player. You could see RF going to Naquin versus RHP’s and a free agent versus LHP’s. That may disappoint fans as that is not a replacement for Castellanos.
    Akiyama is under contract but that would make the 4th LH bat of the OF. That seems like a lot. Plus, if you carry 5 OF on your 25MR, both of your reserve OF’s are LHB’s – unless Naquin platoons with someone. Having Naquin and Akiyama as your 2 OF reserves is not good versus LHRP’s.

    In any event, I think CIN is going to shake up its OF to some extent. Adding 1-2 more OF’s with options is forseeable.

    Inking Aquino to a minor contract with an invite to ST makes sense too. If he heats up in AAA, you could right the hot wave like we saw in 2019. We used 13 OF’s in 2021, so you’ll need quality depth regardless. Our AAA OF should have at least 3 players with MLB experience if not success. LF, Friedl and Aquino with perhaps even a 4th OF there too.

    • Jim Walker

      Don’t disagree on AA but it could be a slippery slope getting him through waivers then also re-signed when other teams have a shot at him. He was already down this road once before (after the 2018 season) and quickly re-signed with the Reds. Given all that’s gone on since AA may be more inclined to look around for other opportunities if he clears waivers (or is non-tendered)

  14. Michael B. Green

    I agree, Jim. It’s hard to use a 40MR spot for someone that strikes out 37% of the time though and hit below .200 against both righties and lefties. Tremendous power and a good arm. Great clubhouse guy too.