[Tom Diesman is on vacation this week, so we asked Warren Leeman to pinch hit. Warren is known in Redleg Nation as Shchi Cossack. Thanks, Warren!]

The past week tested the mettle of Reds fans with the setbacks and injuries to key contributors. As always, such events also create opportunities and this week was no exception. Tim Adleman received a promotion to the 25-man roster and made his first major league start with a 6.00 inning performance that included 3-H, 2-BB, 2-ER & 6-SO against the Pirates on Sunday. John Lamb received a reprieve from his last rehab start and made his first major league start of the 2016 season with a 6.0 inning performance that included 6-H, 3-BB, 1-ER & 4-SO against the Giants on Tuesday. Ramon Cabrera received a promotion to the 25-man roster to back up Tucker Barnhart and the Reds signed Rafael (Raffy) Lopez from the independent Atlantic League for catching depth at AAA.

Layne Somsen had been promoted to the 25-man roster on 4/25/16, but was optioned back to AAA three days later without throwing a pitch. That had to be exciting and disappointing for Somsen, especially with the state of the major league bullpen.

Significant reinforcements are pending with Homer Bailey and Anthony DeSclafani still managing their rehab assignments and Jesse Winker, Jose Peraza, Cody Reed and Robert Stephenson awaiting their call up as permanent residents of the 25-man roster.

Louisville Bats Class AAA International League

  • 14-10 & 2nd place in the IL South Division, 2.5 games behind Columbus
  • 1st in the IL with a .339 OBP
  • 2nd in the IL with a 1.21 WHIP and 4th in the IL with a 3.14 ERA

TOP SEASON-TO-DATE PERFORMERS

  • Jesse Winker (.321/.423/.432) 9th in the IL with an .855 OPS
  • Jermaine Curtis (.323/.463/.387) 11th in the IL with an .850 OPS
  • Steve Selsky (.275/.383/.348) 30th in the IL with a .731 OPS
  • Jose Peraza (.287/.333/.394) 31st in the IL with a .727 OPS
  • Cody Reed (0.90 WHIP & 1.64 ERA) 16.2 IP w/ 10-H, 5-BB & 17-SO
  • Robert Stephenson (0.94 WHIP & 1.50 ERA) 18.0 IP w/ 10-H, 7-BB & 20-SO
  • Josh Smith (1.17 WHIP & 2.48 ERA) 29.0 IP w/ 27-H, 7-BB & 21-SO
  • Chad Rogers (0.90 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 10.0 IP w/ 5-H, 4-BB & 5-SO
  • Keyvius Sampson (0.94 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 10.2 IP w/ 6-H, 4-BB & 10-SO
  • Dayan Diaz (0.96 WHIP & 1.93 ERA) 9.1 IP w/ 5-H, 4-BB & 5-SO
  • Layne Somsen (0.97 WHIP & 1.59 ERA) 11.1 IP w/ 6-H, 5-BB & 13-SO

TOP WEEKLY PERFORMERS

  • Hernan Iribarren (.438/.471/.625) 17-PA w/ 3-2B, 1-BB & 4-SO
  • Steve Selsky (.333/.524/.533) 21-PA w/ 3-2B, 5-BB, 1-HBP & 7-SO
  • Jesse Winker (.333/.467/.500) 30-PA w/ 1-2B, 2-HR, 6-BB & 5-SO
  • Jose Peraza (.286/.323/.500) 31-PA w/ 3-2B, 1-HR, 2-BB & 3-SO
  • Cody Reed (0.29 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 7.0 IP w/ 1-H, 1-BB & 5-SO
  • Dayan Diaz (0.33 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 3.0 IP w/ 0-H, 1-BB & 3-SO
  • Jumbo Diaz (0.55 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 3.2 IP w/ 1-H, 1-BB & 5-SO
  • Keyvius Sampson (0.75 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 5.1 IP w/ 3-H, 1-BB & 4-SO
  • Chad Rogers (0.88 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 2.1 IP w/ 0-H, 2-BB & 2-SO
  • A.J. Morris (1.00 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 5.0 IP w/ 4-H, 1-BB & 3-SO

WEDNESDAY RESULTS: Louisville 3 – Norfolk 2

  • The Bats won a duel in the final inning.
  • Robert Stephenson => 6.0 IP w/ 2-ER, 5-H, 4-BB, 6-SO
  • The bullpen threw blanks over the final 3 innings. See, it IS possible!
  • Chad Rogers => 2.0 IP w/ 1-H & 2-SO
  • Steve Delabar => 1.0 IP w/ 1-BB & 1-SO
  • The newly signed catcher, Raffy Lopez, drove in the winning run in his 1st game.
  • Raffy Lopez => 2-4 w/ 2-RBI

Pensacola Blue Wahoos Class AA Southern League

  • 14-11 & 2nd place in the SL South Division, 3.5 games behind Biloxi
  • Pensacola ranks at or near the bottom of all SL hitting statistics
  • 2nd in the SL with a 1.14 WHIP and 1st in the SL with a 2.75 ERA

TOP SEASON-TO-DATE PERFORMERS

  • Phillip Ervin (.243/.371/.459) 11th in the SL with an .830 OPS
  • Beau Amaral (.298/.368/.440) 14th in the SL with an .809 OPS
  • Tony Renda (.286/.348/.429 ) 20th in the SL with a .776 OPS
  • Rookie Davis (0.78 WHIP & 0.78 ERA) 23.0 IP w/ 15-H, 3-BB & 14-SO
  • Amir Garrett (0.88 WHIP & 1.52 ERA) 29.2 IP w/ 20-H, 6-BB & 32-SO
  • Nick Routt (0.62 WHIP & 0.69 ERA) 13.0 IP w/ 6-H, 2-BB & 10-SO
  • Daniel Wright (0.72 WHIP & 0.52 ERA) 18.0 IP w/ 9-H, 4-BB & 19-SO
  • Barrett Astin (0.83 WHIP & 2.03 ERA) 13.1 IP W/ 9-H, 2-BB & 11-SO
  • Carlos Gonzalez (0.97 WHIP & 0.73 ERA) 12.1 IP w/ 9-H, 2-BB & 11-SO
  • Wandy Peralta (1.25 WHIP & 2.25 ERA) 12.0 IP w/ 13-H, 2-BB & 11-SO

TOP WEEKLY PERFORMERS

  • Phillip Ervin (.455/.625/1.000) 16-PA w/ 2-HR, 4-BB & 1-SO
  • Tony Renda (.368/.400/.632) 20-PA w/ 3-2B, 1-3B, 1-BB & 1-SO
  • Calten Daal (.429/.467/.429) 15-PA w/ 1-BB & 1-SO
  • Brandon Dixon (.267/.313/.533) 16-PA w/ 1-2B, 1-HR, 0-BB & 8-SO
  • Zach Vincej (.333/.500/.333) 12-PA w/ 2-BB & 2-SO
  • Rookie Davis (0.40 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 5.0 IP w/ 2-H, 0-BB & 1-SO
  • Carlos Gonzalez (0.50 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 2.0 IP w/ 0-H, 1-BB & 3-SO

WEDNESDAY RESULTS: Pensacola 8 – Biloxi 3

  • The Blue Wahoos finished off an organizational sweep with a big win.
  • Sal Romano => 6.0 IP w/ 3-R, 2-ER, 5-H, 2-BB, 8-SO
  • The bullpen threw blanks over the final 3 innings. See, it IS possible!
  • Daniel Wright => 2.0 IP w/ 1-H & 3-SO
  • Alejandro Chacin => 1.0 IP w/ 1-BB & 1-SO
  • Phillip Ervin came up clutch with a bases loaded triple in the 6 run 5th inning.
  • Phillip Ervin => 1-4 w/ 1-3B, 3-RBI & 1-R

Daytona Tortugas Class A+ Florida State League

  • 10-15 & 5th place in the FSL North Division, 6.5 games behind Clearwater
  • Daytona ranks in the bottom half of all FSL hitting statistics
  • Daytona ranks in the bottom half of all FSL pitching statistics

TOP SEASON-TO-DATE PERFORMERS

  • Aristides Aquino (.250/.337/.467) 18th in the FSL with an .804 OPS
  • Angelo Gumbs (.304/.368/.435) 19th in the FSL with an .803 OPS
  • Brian O’Grady (.222/.378/.381) 23rd in the FSL with an .759 OPS
  • Avain Rachal (.200/.389/.364) 24th in the FSL with an .753 OPS
  • Tyler Mahle (0.87 WHIP & 2.60 ERA) 27.2 IP w/ 17-H, 7-BB & 29-SO
  • Jimmy Herget (0.69 WHIP & 1.38 ERA) 13.0 IP w/ 7-H, 2-BB & 21-SO
  • Ismael Guillon (0.95 WHIP & 3.55 ERA) 12.2 IP w/ 6-H, 6-BB & 13-SO
  • Evan Mitchell (0.96 WHIP & 1.08 ERA) 8.1 IP w/ 5-H, 3-BB & 11-SO
  • Seth Varner (1.17 WHIP & 2.93 ERA) 15.1 IP w/ 14-H, 4-BB & 12-SO

TOP WEEKLY PERFORMERS

  • Aristides Aquino (.545/.630/1.227) 27-PA w/ 5-HR, 4-BB & 3-SO
  • Blake Butler (.333/.333/.625) 25-PA w/ 1-2B, 2-HR, 0-BB & 6-SO
  • Tyler Mahle (1.00 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 6.0 IP w/ 4-H, 2-BB & 7-SO
  • Keury Mella (1.00 WHIP & 1.50 ERA) 6.0 IP w/ 3-H, 3-BB & 5-SO
  • Jimmy Herget (0.50 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 4.0 IP w/ 1-H, 1-BB & 7-SO
  • Seth Varner (1.00 WHIP & 1.80 ERA) 5.0 IP w/ 4-H, 1-BB & 6-SO

WEDNESDAY RESULTS: Postponed/Rain

Dayton Dragons Class A Midwest League

  • 5-21 & 8th place in the MWL Eastern Division, 12.5 games behind Lake County
  • Dayton ranks at or near the bottom of all MWL hitting statistics
  • Dayton ranks at or near the bottom of all MWL pitching statistics

TOP SEASON-TO-DATE PERFORMERS

  • Shed Long (.256/.316/.430) 32nd in the MWL with an .746 OPS
  • Ariel Hernandez (0.91 WHIP & 1.17 ERA) 15.1 IP w/ 3-H, 11-BB & 17-SO

TOP WEEKLY PERFORMERS:

  • Ariel Hernandez (0.50 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 6.0 IP w/ 0-H, 3-BB & 7-SO
  • Conor Krauss (0.80 WHIP & 0.00 ERA) 5.0 IP w/ 2-H, 2-BB & 4-SO

WEDNESDAY RESULTS: Dayton 4 – Burlington 3

  • The Dragons won a 15-innings afternoon marathon.
  • Jacob Constante => 6.0 IP w/ 3-R, 1-ER, 6-H, 2-BB, 5-SO
  • The bullpen threw blanks over the remaining 9 innings. See, it IS possible!
  • Shane Mardirosian => 4-5 w/ 1-2B, 1-BB, 1-HBP, 2-R, 1-RBI
  • A box score filling game that a middle IF and manager dream of!

Join the conversation! 24 Comments

  1. As few hitting prospects as we have, you’ve got to love the OBP of Winker and Ervin. I can definitely see future #2 and #5/6 hole hitters. In GABP, you just need to get people on base because anyone can hit a homer.

    • The dirth of hitting prospects is scary, really scary, for future competitiveness. The Reds are simply going to have to trade a quality, controlled starting pitcher for a quality, controlled hitter or a boatload of hitting prospects. If Williams can make that move and make it count, then adding a FA hitter to fill a hole and get the Reds over the top to compete becomes realistic.

      • Given the Reds minor league depth seems to be the quality/quantity of starting pitchers, I have always assumed that someone like an Amir Garrett was going to be traded for a hitter or two to fill in gaps of the major league lineup.

        • I don’t think the Reds will get the needed returnfor unproven, major league talent. The Reds are going to have to take the risk on that unproven talent and trade proven, controllable talent in order to get the return they need. Then the Reds will have to hope that the prospects can replace the proven talent they traded.

          That could be Disco or Finnegan after the 2016 season or maybe even Bailey, if he can come back and perform beyond his contract during the 2016 season. The risk will be replacing proven, quality talent with prospects. There is simply no guarantee with the prospects. That’s what makes the proven talent so valuable and justifying the return needed by the Reds.

        • I agree Cossack. I’ve commented on other articles and have thought for a while that DeSclafani should be the pitcher that is traded for hitting. Depending on when he returns from the DL, and how he pitches when he does, I think he could even be moved at this years trade deadline. Contending teams are always looking for pitching help at the deadline and since the team acquiring Disco would have him for multiple low-cost seasons, they should be willing to give up more for him.

      • It still raises my blood to close to the boiling point when I think of how the Reds tried to force Michael Lorenzen into a starting pitcher role without even looking at him as a position guy on the basis of him having thrown ~45 innings as a part time college closer versus his three seasons of 900+ OPS as a high level all around well rated outfielder at a top level D1 program (CS Fullerton). And now it looks like at best they will have spent a top 40 overall draft pick on a back in bullpen guy.

        • He was a 3rd rounder as a hitter. He had a big looping swing. I remember the initial draft grades killed the Reds for picking him that high but they assumed he was as a hitter.

          • The projections I’ve seen had him as a mid 2nd to early 3rd rounder as a position guy. Probably #50-70 overall. Seen as eventual MLB player, no worse than 4th OF.

        • My frustration over the Reds handling of Lorenzen springs largely from an interview he did several years, I believe when he was at Dayton.

          I don’t have a link to it; but, in reprise, ML said that prior to the draft, he had been contacted by several teams but not the Reds. None of the teams that he had been in direct contact with had talked to him about pitching; they all saw him as a position prospect.

          Thus, he showed up at the Reds rookie camp assuming he was a position guy but was sat down for a talk in which he was told he was a pitcher. To close the deal, they apparently told him if the pitching didn’t work out, he could have a look as a position player down the line.

          The whole affair struck me as an underwhelming lack of research and planning in making a 1st round pick.

  2. Well done and well presented, Mr. Leeman! As the cossacks might say: отличная работа!

  3. I know its a few years off but:

    1. Peraza – SS/2B
    2. Winker – LF
    3. Votto – 1B
    4. Someone they trade for/sign -CF/RF
    5. Suarez -3B
    6. Ervin – RF/CF
    7. Someone maybe Blandino – 2B/SS
    8. Barnhart -C

    • Devin Mesoraco may be that outfielder and we know he can be a #4 in the order.

      of course to get that done, you will have to trade walt J. and maybe bryan p.

      • If the shoulder doesn’t work, Meso doesn’t hit well enough to play anywhere.

      • If Meso hit the wall like Duvall has hit it a few times then he’d be in intensive care and Duvall is right back tomorrow. Not saying he can help it but that’s where Meso is

    • Gaffer, if I may run with your thoughts a little…

      1. Peraza – SS
      2. Winker – LF
      3. Ervin – RF
      4. Votto – 1B
      5. Suarez – 2B/3B
      6. Open from trade – 2B/3B
      7. Barnhart – C
      8. Pitcher
      9. Hamilton – CF

      With a solid offensive lineup, the Reds can afford to keep Hamilton in CF and sacrifice the offenseive contribution for his defensive prowess.

      I hope Blandino works out, but I have my doubts. Jagielo is not going to be a solution. There are 2 players at Pensacola (Renda & Amaral) & 3 players at Daytona (Ruimbs, Aquino & O’Grady) who have raise the Old Cossack’s eyebrows this season. Renda and Amaral are playing their age 25 seasons at AA & O’Grady is playing his age 24 season at A+ so the clock is ticking for those 3 players. Aquino is playing his age 22 season at A+ and has a solid, albeit inconsistent, history of results so he could vault into the major league picture over the next couple of seasons. Gumbs is playing his age 23 season at A+ and has never fulfilled his pedigree potential previously, but maybe he is finally getting it together. He is young enough to still have a legitimate shot at the show.

      I believe that Cozart will fetch a significant over pay by a contender at the trade deadline this season. I also think Bruce should fetch equitable prospects value at the trade deadline this season. It’s time to part ways and bring in some position prospects this season. Hopefully the return for Cozart will include a viable middle-of-the-lineup hitter with solid defensive skills at 2B or 3B.

      The Reds need to find a young RH defensive catcher with a significant platoon split to pair with Barnhart at the major league level. I’m hoping that Hudson will play himself into the picture as an internal candidate, but he already slipped through the rule 5 draft this season. Hudson is an absolute stud defensively and he has hit LHP successfully, but heneeds to hit consistently at AA & AAA. Even if Mesoraco returns as the starting catcher, his time with the Reds is limited and the Reds should not consider any additional extention for Mesoraco. An extention for Barnhart makes sense due to his age and strong defensive skills and with a solid platoon partner, his durability should be enhanced.

      • I am with you on Blandino. Even though he was injured in the WBC, he carried that over into his start of this year. It has really hampered him. Tony Renda has been a very pleasant surprise with the bat. He’ll go to Louisville soon when Peraza comes up to Cincinnati.
        I’m looking high and low for that young C to pair with Barnhart. I agree with your sentiments there. The Reds should prepare as though Mesoraco is done. If he comes back next spring and swings the bat well, then the Reds have some options.
        As per your future lineup above, maybe Ervin goes in CF and the Reds find a big bat for the corner OF position opposite Winker. Now if Suarez goes to 2B, then the big bat can come in at 3B, kind of like you have it.

      • Interesting that you didn’t mention Elizalde. Not too high on him? I like his ability to drive in runs. Pretty decent OBP and a LH bat.

      • When you are talking about the return in a Cozart trade, are you talking about prospects? Or do you think that a contender would trade a major leaguer who hits and fields well and is, presumably, quite a bit younger? The latter seems a little unlikely to me. It would require a trade partner who loses a starting shortstop and has a surplus middle of the lineup hitter.

  4. Nice minor league round-up.
    “•Pensacola ranks at or near the bottom of all SL hitting statistics.”
    “•Daytona ranks in the bottom half of all FSL hitting statistics.”
    “•Dayton ranks at or near the bottom of all MWL hitting statistics.”
    This is just outlandish.
    In the baseball world that should be a criminal offense with jail time to serve.

    “And with the #2 pick in the 2016 MLB draft, The Cincinnati Reds select Right Hand Pitcher __________ .” (fill in the blank)

  5. Yes, the pitching mound is stacked throughout the Reds system and yes, the batter’s box is nearly empty. The bad news is expected return in trade for pitching prospects may be low – too low to replenish the offense at GABP. But the opposite is also true – the expected return for major league ready (or better yet, proven) talent is high. Surely enough to bring either major league ready hitters or enough high level prospects that some will pan out. With the depth of arms in the farm system I’ll have no problem seeing any or all of the following pitchers traded for bats when more arms are healthy: Cingrani, Straily, DeSclafani, and even Iglesias and Lamb. That leaves as potential starters at least Bailey, Finnegan, Reed, Stephenson, Garrett, Davis and Lorenzen plus any of the other five that aren’t traded. All young, healthy and cost controlled except Bailey. And I know some will squawk about Iggy and Lamb but I think those two and Disco could bring not just major league bats but some potential impact hitters. It’s going to be very interesting…

    • I get the impression that hitters are in short supply baseball-wide. If this is the case, the return for our still relatively unproven pitching talent might be disappointing.

  6. I was at the game in Pensacola last night. Ervin is a stud, but Daal was hitting real well last. night. Romano was good last night after the first. Either was missing the plate or was in the middle in the first. After that, he mixed his pitches well and changed speeds. His velocity started at 94-96 and he finished at about 92, but did reach back and throw several above that. The Shuckers infield was porous.

    • Good to hear an eyes on report, especially about Daal who has been making a lot of good offense noise all year. He turns 23 in August. BBRef shows him as 2 years younger than the mean age of players in his league. Hopefully he will be ready for MLB by 2018

    • I really hopr that Daal can continue with his torrid start. He just recently returned from the DL, so his early results are even more questionable. He has also started strong previously, only to tail off badly during the 2nd half of the season. Daal is certainly someone to watch this season.

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