The Cincinnati Reds have signed free agent right-handed pitcher Zack Brown to a minor league deal. Brown, who was born just down the road in Seymour, Indiana (about 70 miles west of Cincinnati) and went to the University of Kentucky was a 5th round pick of the Milwaukee Brewers in 2016.

During his minor league career, Zack Brown spent the first four seasons as a starting pitcher. But when the 2020 minor league season was cancelled he returned to the mound as a reliever in 2021. Things didn’t go as he had planned as he began experiencing shoulder problems that after months of rehab turned out to be inflammation but not until it had cost him the first half of the season and some of the second half as well.

In 2022 he pitched in 49 games for Triple-A Nashville. The then 27-year-old posted a 3.93 ERA in 50.1 innings while allowing just four home runs, walking 19 batters, and striking out 51. The righty held opposing hitters to a .223/.316/.332 line on the season – limiting both power and average. He was better against right-handed hitters, holding them to a .622 OPS, but lefties managed an OPS of just .676 against him.

During the second half of the season he was outstanding, with the exception of one outing. On September 11th he allowed five earned runs in 0.1 innings against Charlotte. Outside of that outing his ERA from July 1st through the end of the season was 2.16. Even including that outing he held opponents to a .575 OPS in that time frame and had 8 walks with 32 strikeouts in 25.1 innings pitched while giving up just 18 hits.

In September and October he happened to pitch in three ballparks in Triple-A where they have publicly available pitch tracking data. In those three games he averaged 94 and 95 MPH on his 2 and 4-seam fastballs, 87 MPH on his change up, and 81 MPH on his slider. His fastball topped out at 96.2 in these three games.

You can see Zack Brown’s career stats here.

27 Responses

  1. LDS

    “Not a worry in the world, a PBR on the way. Life is good today.” Oh wait, that’s the other Zac Brown.

    • Mark Moore

      Not to be confused with Les Brown and his Band of Renown …

      • JB

        Or Arthur Brown who sang “I am The God of Hellfire” . Now there is a walk up song. Scare the crap out of everybody

    • Daytonnati

      Good call, I wonder what his walk-up music would be?

    • Joe Henry

      He makes pretty good wine as well!

  2. Mark Moore

    Well, we need pretty much all the arms we can get stashed in the minors, right?

    If it happens, it happens. That’s all I’ve got to say about that.

  3. MK

    Acquiring Brown(UK) Maile (UK), Northcutt (Mason), and Solak (UofL) it seems they are picking up guys with local connections.

    • Dan

      Maybe that’s the plan for getting people to attend games, sign local guys so their friends and family show up

      • David

        Well, right there, that’s about 25 or 30 people.

        Sounds like a plan! 🙂

      • Rednat

        i think it is a good idea…. if only these local players were actually good. lol

  4. JayTheRed

    I mean on a minor league deal, why not? Maybe we catch lightning in a bottle. Reds have had past success picking up guys who were fringe players before and then they come to Cincy, and they end up having a nice season.

    • TR

      Zack Brown is not a Red’s acquisition that strikes a bell.

      • Colorado Red

        Sometimes things change, Most of the minor league signings are useless. Every once in a while, you get a Brandon D.

    • Don Carson

      Another Re-tread – keep shuffling through that scratch and dent bin. This franchise has gradually become irrelevant in MLB since the purchase by the Castellinis.
      I stopped buying their tickets and this season I will not be watching Or listening. Purchased MLB package so that I can see real baseball.

  5. Redhaze

    Trying to stay positive. I am wondering what a rotation of Cueto, Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft and Grienke would do to win the central division. Duvall. McCutcheon and Fraley in the outfield. Steer, Newman, India, Stephenson and Votto. I digress.

    • A.B.

      Greinke? No thanks. He might be the strangest person in MLB. I’d rather have a veteran with a good head on his shoulders for the younger guys.

      Also, did you already forget about the Wil Myers signing or is he a bench player in your world?

    • Redhaze

      Matt Moore for the bullpen would be solid.

    • Steven Ross

      I’m down with that lineup and staff. Won’t happen but I like the way you’re thinking.

  6. Jeremy L

    Lol Grienke’s character, mindset and authenticity are EXACTLY why I’d love him to be added to the Reds!!

    • Rude Onederful

      Dude, same. Him + Votto in the same dugout? I’m all in.

      • JB

        Bring back Puig as well. He can be the leader of the odd balls.

    • Jimbo44CN

      Me too. Dude is a winner. A little strange, yes, but a winner who knows how to pitch.

  7. CFD3000

    Probably a good acquisition. Brown definitely adds depth at AAA and might turn out to be a valuable bullpen arm in Cincinnati. But sad that this is relatively big Reds offseason news.

    • Jim Walker

      overall +1500
      Last sentence by itself is worth 1000 of that at least.

      • TR

        One of the least active Red’s offseasons I can recall. There’s few live embers left in the old fashioned Hot Stove league, before the electronic era, with this owenership group. It appears to be ‘get things set up’ for coming ownership change.