The Cincinnati Reds have officially called up catcher Mark Kolozsvary from Triple-A Louisville and placed Tyler Stephenson on the 10-day injured list. C. Trent Rosecans of The Athletic reported on Friday night that it would be Kolozsvary that would be getting the call up.

Tyler Stephenson had just returned from the injured list a week prior to the All-Star break after he broke his thumb on a foul ball while he was behind the plate. Last night he took another foul ball while behind the plate and this one caught him on his collarbone. He initially remained in the game, but when he went to throw a ball to first base he really felt the pain from the break and couldn’t attempt the throw, exiting the game to go get an x-ray. There’s no timetable for his return at this point. Stephenson said after the game that the good news is that his break does not require surgery as long as everything heals properly.

With Aramis Garcia also on the injured list with an injured finger, the Reds will now be leaning on a catching duo of Michael Papierski and Mark Kolozsvary. They have as many hits in the big leagues in their career as Tyler Stephenson has home runs this season – six. Kolozsvary has seen time in Double-A and Triple-A this year, as well as a brief stint in Cincinnati, too. In the minors this year he’s hitting .188/.317/.306 in 28 games played. He went 1-11 in his seven games with the Reds earlier this year.

Stephenson was hitting .319/.372/.482 at the time of the injury, and was one of the better hitting catchers in Major League Baseball this year. Those are going to be some pretty big shoes to fill, and it’s probably unrealistic to expect those guys to step in and perform to that level. Both Papierski and Kolozsvary are more known for their defensive contributions than they are for their offensive prowess.

37 Responses

  1. Moon

    Maybe the guys in the medical field can explain but I take this to mean he had a fracture and not a clean break which I think would be really good news….??

    • Doc

      A fracture is a fracture, a bone is broken. To me it sounds as if it is non-displaced, that is, alignment of the parts is satisfactory for good healing. We don’t know exactly where it is in the clavicle, hopefully it is not near an articulation with another bone, considering it is likely near the shoulder end of the bone.

      • JohnnyTV

        If it’s nearer to the shoulder and the A/C joint it’s likely a bigger problem, actually.

        That’s a complex joint and complex healing situation.

        It’s painful territory, even the weight of the arm puts stress into the zone.

        Hopefully, it hurts worse than is the actual injury itself.

      • MK

        Did you guys stay at a Holiday Inn Express?

      • Doc


        My moniker is Doc for a reason, and it has to do with the four years I spent in medical school and three more in residency, along with 30 years of practice. Thanks for asking.

      • MK

        Now your out, everyone is going to want free medical advice.

      • Mike Adams

        Doc, it hurts when I do this……..

  2. Rob

    Am the only thinking this. Realistically, the Reds need a real replacement. for Stephenson. Not a pair of 150 hitters for the next 6 weeks. Heck, you should be able to get a 1 year contract guy who hits 230 for $2M. Or trade somebody like Almora or Friedl for such. Wouldn’t a rebuilding team like Friedl or Kuhnel for a vet? Doesn’t sound to me like winning is very important if your plan is to go with a couple 150 hitters. Gee whiz.

    • PTBNL

      Trading for a major league catcher is easier said than done. Most teams want to carry two catchers. The contending teams probably will not want to give up a quality back up.

      Do you want to give your guys at least a chance that’s on your 40 man before you know they are not good enough or not?. Plus, what would the capital that the Reds need to give up in order to get a quality back up catcher. It may be real expensive at this point. The Reds are not contending this year. Do you want to give the young guys a chance? The difference with a .150 hitter and a .230 hitter on a team that has no chance for the playoffs is negligible. Not really worth it. Might as well give the young guys a chance.

    • AMDG

      If winning was important, the Reds would have David Bell as a manager, nor would they have dumped Sonny & Wade before the season. Etc.

      Between Oakey, Koslavary, Free, Yang, etc. the Reds don’t exactly have a lot of quality hitting catchers waiting to be called up.

      Their best in house options are either hoping that the seasons James Free & Chuckie Robinson had in AA weren’t flukes, or they call up one of the guys from AAA who can’t hit (which is what they just did).

    • Doc

      So, that would make the difference between being 22 games under .500 and what, maybe 20, 21 games under .500?

      This season is lost so let the catchers in the system play and see what we’ve got going forward. Nothing to lose, knowledge to gain.

      BTW, all those clamoring for TS to be moved out of the catcher’s box have, hopefully, read what he has to say on the Reds mlb website.

      • BK

        Agree, I’m for getting another quality backstop, but the Reds would be crazy to not take advantage of Stephenson behind the plate. Catching is a position where the Reds can leverage Stephenson to have an advantage against almost all teams. Broken bones are not an indication that he’s fragile–his long-term track record lacks injuries. Finding another reliable catcher shouldn’t be to move Stephenson to another position, it should be to keep him strong enough to get his bat in the lineup daily.

    • BK

      Catchers that can hit are scarce across MLB–who do you suggest the Reds target? That said, several teams looking for additions at the trade deadline have quality catching prospects on their farms (Blue Jays, Guardians, Yankees, Mets, Dodgers, Padres). I’d like to see the Reds target a quality catcher in a trade who can split time behind the plate with Stephenson and allow the Reds to use him more as a DH/1B.

      • Rob

        Not looking for Buster Posey or Wilson Contreas. The Reds have Zero right now. AA guys. I am talking bumping it up to a 4 out of 10. (Barnhart is probably a 6 or 7 in my system.). A vet 230 hitter who is no more than a backup journeyman type and who some rebuilder wants to offload for a prospect like Friedl or Kuhnel. Mid to low level talent. They save $2-3M, get a decent prospect , while we get a C until year end. I just don’t believe you can say your team is trying to win when your 2 catchers both hit 150 with no pop. Seriously, if that is the team’s approach, why not trade everyone for prospects? We have been playing 500 ball the last 60 games but if we truly go with Pap and Koz, I would expect some offensive woes and a lot more losses.

    • Greenfield Red

      They should target a high end catching target in the upcoming trades. But not on for this year or even next. Target one of the young guys for 24 when the other talent arrives. Go for the WS in 24, 25 , 26 and beyond.

      • DaveCT

        If nothing else, Greenfield, you are consistent!

        The three words we shall not name are a prescription for disaster, I agree. The one and only approach that might include these three words would be if and only if absolutely paired with words such as elite talent. Further, I’d argue against targeting a specific position, so much as acquiring assets to be used in the way best benefitting the club.

  3. RedFuture

    I don’t know whether it would have prevented the broken clavical but I noticed the cardinal catcher had a much more substantial chest protector.

    • JohnnyTV

      I don’t know either, but post hand injury folks were saying that Stephenson’s normal locating of his right hand put it in a position of risk that wasn’t SOP of all major league catchers.

      Unfortunately, too many improvements to safety occur after an injury has occured.

  4. Don A

    The Reds had a solid backup Catcher (Tucker Barnhart), but were too cheap to keep him!!!

    • BK

      True, but how has that decision worked out so far:

      – Barnhart, 209/269/204, OPS 513, $7.5M or,

      – Garcia, 217/252/264, OPS 516, $700K and
      – 24-year old AA IF Quintana, 254/365/429; OPS .794 (his OPS is up ~150 points under the Red’s developmental staff.

  5. DaveCT

    Other than hitting right-handed, I still am confused to the demotion and DFA of Chris Okey. As far as receiving, the little I saw of him passed the eye test for me. But what do I know? I understand the idea on continuity with the pitching staff, such as it is with Papierski. The bat, however, is AlfRod level, if that. Why not DFA Papierski andcommit to our homegrown rookies, Kolozsvary and Okey, since it’s a lost year anyway? Bell would still have his R/L tandem.

    • BK

      AAA numbers:

      Papierski, age 26, 575 PA, 235/355/355, OPS .710
      Okey, age 27, 321 PA, 232/305/374, OPS .679
      Kolozvary, age 26, 154 PA, 196/301/323, OPS .624

      I’m not seeing any of these three showing signs of being in the long-term plans of the Reds. Of the three, Papierski is the youngest and has the best bat. Why shouldn’t the Reds pick up a player on the waiver wire when he’s outperforming players in our farm? Granted, Papierski provides just a marginal improvement, but I fully support the Red’s front office looking for ways to make marginal improvements.

      • DaveCT

        I agree the club should search far and wide for talent. And I’m not against having Papierski on the roster this year. I am, however, disappointed our own homegrown player, Okey, was given such an extremely limited chance, especially when he’s having one of his better years. I suspect the choice of Papierski over Okey was as much about roster flexibility that Bell utilizes. Perhaps he handled velocity better, or some other detail I/we have little insight of. I do, also, think that a club marketing itself on draft and development can afford to use its own homegrown in a list year. Obviously I just don’t know enough about the complicated position of catcher. I’d love more insight.

  6. Kevin H

    Reds had a solid catching tandem, yet didn’t want to pay Barnhart. His gold glove catching style. No he didn’t hit for average however all around a good solid mlb catcher. No, I don’t care about his war or analytical stats. Barnhart was let go cause Reds are too cheap.

    • Rob

      If the Reds had wanted to compete, Barnhart would or may be here. But they chose to dump salary and rebuild and everyone on here cheered as Tyler would get his chance. We all knew Garcia was not Barnhart. It is called low budget operations. Now, without Tyler or Garcia,it is called an abyss or folly.

      • BK

        I think it was the right move to turn the primary catching duties over to Tyler Stephenson. $7M is too much for a backup of the quality of Barnhart. Also, the Reds gave him an opportunity to move to a team as a starter in his pre-free agency year–something Barnhart likely appreciated and that may have value in attracting free agents/extension candidates. What disappointed me was the decision to go with Garcia (or another minor league free agent) rather than spend a few million to get a quality backup. Garcia is only mildly ahead of our current tandem.

      • SteveaReno

        Barnhart is batting .209, 0 HR, 9 RBI. He has played in 60 games this year for the Tigers

  7. Oldtimer

    It was a different time but the Reds won 1961 NL pennant with Jerry Zimmerman (.206 BA) and Johnny Edwards (.186 BA) as their primary C, both rookies. Veteran C Darrell Johnson was acquired late in the season.

  8. Old-school

    Interesting info from the Brewers. They sign Alan Ashby son- Aaron- a 24 yo controlled lefty pitcher through 2027 with a career WAR of -0.5 and ERA of 4.56 to a 5 year $20.5 mil extension with club options in 2028/29. Maybe the Reds need to start doing this sort of thing. Graham Ashcraft doesnt give up home runs and pitches in GABP and is the Reds best starting pitcher as a rookie not named Castillo or Mahle.

  9. Roger Garrett

    Loved Tucker but he can’t hit.Loved Eugenio but don’t miss his 38% strike out rate this year and loved Wink but his OPS is 675 or so.Reds have more to get rid of and when they do team gets younger and more athletic.May lose just as many games next year or even more but if they do things right then they could compete in their division in 2024.Mark,Pap and Garcia are good enough for this year and next cause it won’t make a big difference.

    • Kevin H

      Winker has been playing better, and is a solid hitter. Suarez is also playing better. They would be leaders on this team. Barnhart is a good Baseball player and while not hitting this year has hit. I know they don’t measure up to your standards, but Suarez will drive in 100 runs this season, Winker will more in likely bat around 260 this season and Barnhart is a solid catcher who is hitting better than the three catchers the Reds have used this season not named Stepheson

  10. JohnnyTV

    If these three are going to be it, then we should just accept their sub-Mendoza limits and Bell should have them working on their situational hitting:
    hitting behind the runner, bunting, drawing a walk, sac fly, avoiding DPs.

    You don’t have to be a hole in the lineup.