The Reds added another former closer to the spring-training mix. Whether Kerry Ligtenberg will be in the mix to be the closer this season remains to be seen.
“We’re bringing him in to compete,” Reds general manager Wayne Krivsky said. “He throws strikes. He’s been durable. He’s been a part of winning teams. We’ll wait and see.”
Ligtenberg, 35, signed a minor-league deal with an invitation to big-league camp Wednesday. He’s served as a closer in the past. But he spent all of last season with Iowa, the Cubs’ Triple-A affiliate. He recorded 18 saves, walked six and struck out 44 in 58 innings.
He’s spent eight seasons in the majors and has a 3.82 ERA. He was Atlanta’s closer in 1998, recording 30 saves and a 2.71 ERA in 75 appearances. He’s also pitched for Baltimore, Toronto and Arizona. He’s been limited to seven big-league games since 2004.
“We had a scout watch him throw over the weekend in Minneapolis,” Krivsky said. “He was pitching in the (University of) Minnesota alumni game.”
A 35 year old guy who was pitching in an alumni game…. and that was enough to get him a minor league contract. Yet, the Reds released Claussen. Guess the Reds didn’t have their quota of old – washed up relievers filled yet.
I’ve been a Reds fan since the late ’60’s, with my luck of being able to attend plenty of games at Riverfront during the BRM era. I was sitting in the Green Seats in the OF when Pete came home in ’84 and was in the Red seats when Glenn Braggs reached over the fence in ’90 to beat the Pirates. I have had many favorites from Jim Maloney to Johnny Bench, Barry Larkin, Adam Dunn, and Jay Bruce.