On a day when we knew there would be at least two roster moves made, the Cincinnati Reds went out and made five of them. Nick Lodolo has been activated from the 60-day injured list. We knew that was coming as he was the probable starter for tonight’s game against the New York Mets. That resulted in the team optioning Max Schrock to Triple-A Louisville to clear a spot on the 26-man roster. But the Reds also picked up right-handed pitcher Ian Gibaut from the Los Angeles Dodgers on waivers. That move meant that another spot needed to be made on the 40-man, resulting in Tony Santillan being transferred to the 60-day injured list and catcher Chris Okey being designated for assignment. Update: Tyler Naquin has also been activated. Mark Kolozsvary has been optioned back to Triple-A. Did you get all of that?

Nick Lodolo returns tonight after missing more than two months with a back injury. He made three starts with Cincinnati in April before the injury, but then sat out while his back recovered. He then made four rehab starts – the first at the complex and then three more in Triple-A Louisville – where he threw 12.2 innings with three walks and 18 strikeouts while giving up four runs (2.84 ERA). Tonight he gets to face off against one of the best teams in baseball and match up against one of the best pitchers of this generation in Max Scherzer. Welcome back, Nick!

Ian Gibaut has been around the league. Sort of. He made his big league debut in 2019 with the Tampa Bay Rays. Since then he’s been in the Rangers, Twins, Guardians, and Dodgers organizations via trade, free agency, and waiver claims. The Dodgers claimed him on waivers a week ago, but he never pitched in their organization before the put him back on waivers and this time the Reds put in a claim for him.  He’s thrown 34.2 innings in the big leagues with 21 walks, 34 strikeouts, and a 5.19 ERA between 2019-2022. This season the 28-year-old pitched in Triple-A with Columbus and posted a 3.20 ERA in 19.2 innings without allowing a home run, walking 8, and he had 19 strikeouts. You can see his career stats here.

It’s been just under three weeks since Tony Santillan was placed on the injured list with lower back pain. He’s going to miss a lot more time than that as he was placed on the 60-day injured list. The soonest he will be able to return now is August 13th.

53 Responses

  1. LDS

    Doug, you follow this more closely than any of us. Is there anything about Gibaut that we should see as an upside. Certainly his stat line doesn’t suggest that.

    • JayTheRed

      I have seen much worse stat lines for players that have been picked up by the Reds this season.

    • J

      Every inning he pitches will be an inning that someone else doesn’t have to pitch. That’s considered “upside” as far as this team is concerned.

      • Redsvol

        exactamuno! Finally! We should be claiming and designated a relief pitcher once a week until the end of the season. There is absolutely no-one in that bullpen that anyone should feel is part of the future. Lots of MLB teams are designating relief pitchers this week and will continue over next 2 weeks as many injured pitchers are slated to come back around the all star break. Churn em & burn em. These are major league baseball players. Give them a short audition, if they don’t perform, designate them and bring in the next one. Everyone wants a shot in big leagues.

    • old-school

      MLB traderumors says his Fb velo has ticked up to 97 MPH and good spin on his breaking ball.

      • Chris Holbert

        This is his 6th organization since 2019….Reds go fishing and pull out an old tire….again…..

    • JB

      Well his stats say he doesn’t walk a batter every inning. To me he is already better than anyone in the bullpen.

  2. Kevin H

    So was Okey that bad to get dfa? I didn’t get to watch him play. From what was said about him he was a competitor and good at calling games.

    I realize baseball is a business and that this move is likely a business move, but seems a bit cold hearted to me. As I mentioned in earlier, I hope Okey gets picked up by another organization and gets a real chance. In the words of Winker ” I can’t wait to get to Seattle”

    • Doc

      Is a DFA move sometimes made essentially knowing that he won’t get picked up and that he will accept assignment, thus remaining in the organization.

      • Greenfield Red

        You want a Catcher? Get Diego Cartaya and more from the Dodgers for Castillo. He’s 20 years old and in hi A ball. 2 to 3 years away.

        Moreno from the Blue Jays is 22 years old and in the majors. If Toronto really thought he was going to be a star, there is no way they trade him for anybody. Now if the have serious doubts about him, then suddenly he would be available.

        Walt Jocketty coined the phrase “major league ready”. That and the ill timing of his trades set the Reds back nearly 10 years. Let’s learn from it, and not do it again.

      • Greenfield Red

        meant as a response to BK on catchers to target.

    • BK

      Before the move, the Reds had 5 catchers on the 40-man roster. Okey’s fate was likely sealed when the Reds picked up Papierski on waivers. I pull for all of these guys to make it, but it’s hard to keep you 40-man spot if you are 5th on the depth chart as a catcher. Behind Stephenson, none hit well enough that we want them in the lineup every day.

      I am hoping there will be a strong catching prospect coming back to the Reds at the trade deadline. Moreno (Blue Jays), Campusano (Padres) and Alvarez (Mets) are all at AAA or higher and on teams that should be deadline buyers. The Blue Jays and Padres have strong catcher teams in the majors. The Reds would benefit from adding a starting caliber catcher that can share starts behind the plate and DH or play 1B on the days they don’t catch.

      • RedsGettingBetter

        I love the idea of getting a good but ready-to-play-ML
        catcher prospect at the trade deadline…

      • Jim Walker

        Agree the writing was on the wall when they were awarded Papierski and then optioned Okey instead of Papierski.

        Folks should keep in mind Okey was not on the 40 man until he was added to be called up when Stephenson was injured. And now he isn’t again.

        Here’s one silver lining for Okey whatever comes moving forward. By being on the active MLB roster and appearing in a regular season game, per the CBA terms, he acquired paid healthcare for life.

      • JB

        Let’s applaud Okey for getting out of this organization. He must feel like he has been released from prison.

      • Greenfield Red

        Again I say, no “major league ready” talent in return for the trades we hope will be coming soon. “Major league ready” is code for “not as good as everybody thinks” or has a “minor” injury that is a career ender (see Dilson Herera).

        The Reds need to target high end 17 to 21 year old prospects who are 2 to 4 years away from the majors. Otherwise this rebuild will fail just like the last one.

        What team is going to give up a prized MLB ready prospect, who by definition is extremely inexpensive (less than 1 mil for at least three years), for an all star pitcher who is making 7.5 mil this year, and will be over 10 mil next before reaching free agency in just 1.5 years? Answer: no team will do so.

      • BK

        @Greenfield, I’m not suggesting targeting MLB ready players, but I would not avoid an elite prospect because he is at/near the Majors either. My point is there are matches for both talent and positional need among likely sellers. The catchers I mentioned are 20, 22 and 23 years old and #2, #6 and #56 in mlb.com’s prospect rankings. The Padres will need to move a contract to add talent. I would love to see the Reds take on Will Myers contract and nab a catcher tinpair with Stephenson.

  3. DataDumpster

    This team loves that waiver wire both ways. I really wonder what gives them the confidence that they can pick up a guy who didn’t get a promotion with several other teams and somehow make hay with him here? What is the record or analytics process that goes into that? Do we have people who watch film all day of guys who just hit the waiver wire? I think this process would be fascinating but it would be a lot better if there were results to show for it…
    I still like the Cowboy’s take: (roughly) “The minors are for development, the pitcher should have all the tools, command, and knowledge needed to succeed in the MLB. The only thing then remaining is to get his head straight.”

    • Tom Diesman

      Reds relievers ERA is a MLB worst 5.65. Rockies are closest team to them with a 4.74 ERA. League average ERA for a reliever is about 3.80. The odds are pretty good any RP DFAd by any other MLB team would be an improvement to the Reds roster. They could probably pick up the next 8 RPs DFAd by other teams, release the 8 RP we have now and be better. 🙂

      • VaRedsFan

        @Tom….I used to enjoy your Minor League report. Any chance you get back to doing that?

      • Old-school

        I agree Va. used to love how he gave the league slash line averages and then indexed that to the Reds players of note.

      • Redsvol

        Absolutely. Pick up any RP that gets DFA’s – give them 3 appearances in a week, if they perform, keep them. If they don’t designate them and try the next. Rinse and Repeat this for the next 12 weeks until we find a competent relief pitcher or two.

  4. Roger Garrett

    Schrock with another cup of coffee but honestly he could have batted 1000 and it would not have made a bit of difference.Vet privilege on a 100 loss team.Go figure.Gibaut needs to be here tonight.No sense in delaying his audition.

    • Rob

      Incredible to think the Reds have optioned, as John Sadak called him on a recent telecast, “Professional Hitter Max Schrock” !!

    • earmbrister

      “Schrock with another cup of coffee but honestly he could have batted 1000 and it would not have made a bit of difference”.

      Of course .167 is a bit less than batting 1.000. Rather than have Schrock get limited playing time with Naquin coming back from the IL, it makes sense for him to get regular ABs in AAA.

      If Pham gets moved AND Schrock starts to hit then he can get MLB experience.

      • Rob

        I’m less concerned about Schrock’s hitting prowess than I am about the effect his trip to the minors will have on the Reds’ bullpen depth.

    • David

      Schrock needs to go back to AAA and work on his pitching. He’s just not major league ready, yet.

      Wait, what?

  5. LarkinPhillips

    By no means do I think Okey will be a big loss, but the frustrating thing as a Reds fan this year is that from the start, this year is clearly a year to build towards the future. Yet, consistently the Reds have chosen veteran journeymen over giving a young guy a chance. With India out, Lopez should have had a shot. With Stephenson out, we should have a gave a true to shot to one of our young catchers Okey, Kolosvary, etc. And Schrock never got a chance at all due to his spot on this team being filled by Moustakas. I don’t think any of those three would have been a star or made a difference, but dang shouldn’t we at least give them an honest chance to succeed instead of one start after sitting on the bench for a week and a few scattered PH appearances. No hitter can find a rhythm or have a true chance at success that way.

    Same thing with the bullpen young arms, give them a true “role” and let them get prepared for it rather than them not pitching for five days, then three days in a row in three different situations. Again, with these young arms it might not have mattered, but at least give them a fighting chance.

    • BK

      Papierski is 14 months younger than Okey.

      • LarkinPhillips

        The point wasn’t papierski verse Okey. The point was you can’t evaluate a guy the way the Reds are giving these guys “a chance.” I agree on all of them being fringe players at best. But how do we know if they are or not?

      • BK

        Because the evaluation doesn’t necessarily have to take place in the majors to be valid. Most evaluations should take place in the minors.

    • Kevin H

      I agree and my point with Okey. Who knows what he could do. Friedl, Lopez, and Barrero the same.

      Just frustrating not to know what they can or can’t do if get a shot

      • BK

        From my perspective, Lopez, Friedl, and Okey are fringe prospects based on their minor league performance. If they want more playing time, they need to perform, even if opportunities are limited.

        Schrock and Barrero started the year on the IL. I expect we’ll see them both in Cincinnati post trade deadline. Hopefully, this time at AAA will position them to be ready to seize the opportunity. I expect Barrero to eventually win a starting spot in our lineup; hopefully his hamate injury doesn’t impact him much longer.

      • Jim Walker

        Agree BK, and it is easy to lose sight of the fact that those who have played through a hamate recovery say that the last thing to return, long after everything seems normal again, is their power and by inference extension. That’s pretty much where Barrero is right now. Some guys say it took them as much as a year. Let’s hope it is quicker for Jose and the Reds

      • JB

        If lopez,Lopez, and Okey are fringe prospects then what is Papierski? Because he stinks. The Reds always think the next waiver claim guy is going to be the one who takes them to the promise Land. Just flea market Bob arguing over an item that’s 25cents and Bob wants to pay a dime.

      • Redsvol

        Okey has almost 1300 plate appearances in the minor leagues with an OPS of around .614 and considered average to sub-par defense. By now, I think we know what Okey can do. However, I do agree with you on Friedl and Lopez. There minors statistics give some reason to believe they deserve some extended run on a major league team.

    • Redsvol

      Okey has been with the Reds staff for 1300 plate appearances. I think they know what he is. Papierski is young and has an OPS almost 80 points higher than Okey in the minors. At least we know he can hit better.

  6. Bet on red

    Word on the street Naquin is on the reds clubhouse and another move about to be made.

    • Votto4life

      Haha you guys have all the scoop. I need to get out in the street more lol

    • Tom Diesman

      Actually, I believe they need to make 2 more moves. They cleared 2 40 man spots for Gibaut and Lodolo by DFA Okey and Moving Santillan from 15 DL to 60 DL. But neither of Okey or Santillan was on the 26 man roster. Optioning Schrock cleared one 26 man roster spot. So they need to clear another 26 man roster spot to complete the above transactions, and will then need to clear another to Add Naquin to the 26 man roster.

    • BK

      Our catchers are banged up. My guess is Kolozsvary is sent down if Garcia can play. Otherwise, Garcia will go to the IL.

  7. Chris Holbert

    Naquin in the lineup batting 4th.

  8. BK

    Per the Red’s twitter feed … Koloszvary was optioned and Naquin activated from the IL.

    • Jim Walker

      You nailed it but it was about as obvious as the Okey move once they tipped their hand which was DFA

  9. Eddiek957

    If the reds like they can keep okey in the organization if he goes unclaimed. I don’t see any one else putting him on their 40. Our bullpen is terrible not the worst thing to add an arm multiple teams claimed over the last couple of years. Read his spin rate on his curve was good throws mid nineties

  10. AMDG

    If Ian Gibaut can give up inherited runners, then I believe he has found a home with the Reds…

  11. JohnnySofa

    Really? All this chatter about waiver wire moves by a dreadful organization? Go fishing. Mow the grass. Paint the neighbor’s porch. Stop pretending a waiver move will fix anything. All you need to remember is this: Krall said in March the team was built to be competitive. He’s lost. Don’t follow.

  12. AMDG

    Neither Okey, Kolozsvary nor Papierski have shown any ability to hit the baseball at any level of the minors.

    Okey is a 0.209 hitter in the minors vs 0.219 for Papierski & Kolozsvary.

    It probably doesn’t matter which of them plays at this point. None of them seem to project to more than a 3rd catcher. And none of them should be on the 2023 roster.

    I’d guess Stephenson’s backup in 2023 will be some veteran cast-off, unless James Free can suddenly hit.

    • David

      And Okey was the number 2 pick the year that Senzel was the number one pick. There were high hopes for him, but he couldn’t hit in rookie ball, and really never has hit since.
      Maybe a nice guy, but a wasted draft pick. Who scouted him and recommended he be drafted this high? Why aren’t the Reds competitive? They draft like crap. And they have for years.
      Krall takes a lot of crap from the readers here, but give him credit; with his limited resources he is trying to bring in better talent. And even the most marginal improvement like this, and it is pretty marginal.
      Solano was hurt early on this year, but has proven he is still a decent ball player. Drury has been a minor miracle. Where would the Reds be without his HR and RBI’s? He overpaid for Pham and Minor. And even though he was condemned for releasing Miley, how many innings has Miley pitched this year for the Cubs? I think that number is ….0.
      Maybe he gets the Castellinis to finally release Moustakas….but who am I kidding?

      • JohnnySofa

        Do I see the word “improvement?” You’re a positive fan and I can’t fault you. But please just facts: under Krall’s direction the Reds have gone from a playoff contender to one of the worst teams in recent memory. With absolutely no end in sight. This is a mess. Period.