The Cincinnati Reds have made four more cuts to their spring training roster this afternoon. Right-handed pitchers Graham Ashcraft, Ben Lively, and Kyle Zimmer, as well as left-handed pitcher Phillip Diehl were all reassigned to minor league camp today. Those moves trim the Reds roster down to 42 players, plus Tejay Antone who is on the 60-day injured list. Of those 42 players, though, at least five of them are going to begin the season on the injured list – shortstop Jose Barrero, as well as pitchers Luis Castillo, Justin Dunn, Lucas Sims, and Mike Minor. So if you’re keeping track of trying to figure out the Opening Day roster, it’s down to 37 players for the 28 spots.
None of the pitchers that were cut today were on the 40-man roster, which remains full. Graham Ashcraft last pitched on March 21st when he allowed a run in 3.0 innings on one hit and two hit batters while striking out two. Phillip Diehl hadn’t given up an earned run in his three appearances that stretched 3.1 innings where he allowed three hits and a walk to go with two strikeouts. Ben Lively only pitched in one game, allowing a run in 2.0 innings on one hit and he struck out five batters. Kyle Zimmer did not appear in a game.
Graham Ashcraft was mentioned early on in camp to be in competition for a spot in the rotation. But after not pitching for over a week it seemed that he was not likely still being considered and now there’s no question that he will begin his season in the minor leagues – likely with Triple-A Louisville. Phillip Diehl, Ben Lively, and Kyle Zimmer all seemed like they were trying to win a spot in the bullpen that may have had some open competition for a few spots. If those players didn’t have opt-outs in their contracts if they didn’t make the team out of spring training (or if they did have them and choose to remain), I would expect them to be in Louisville when the season begins.