2017 Reds

Reds sign free agent pitcher Scott Feldman

As reported by Ken Rosenthal, the Reds have signed free agent RHP Scott Feldman to a one-year contract:

We’ll have more on Feldman soon, but here’s the initial reaction from some of our writers:

Here, you can take a look at Feldman’s career stats. He’ll be 34 next month.

Hopefully, Feldman will be an innings-eater — 183 career starts — and he’s on a 1-year deal. Could pitch out of the bullpen or be the fifth starter. Perfect fit for who the 2017 Reds expect to be, and if he’s good, Cincinnati might be able to flip him at the trade deadline.

I’m okay with it.


Also, he’s not this Feldman:

feldman

49 thoughts on “Reds sign free agent pitcher Scott Feldman

  1. Maybe they can flip him for Arrieta in July . . . like Chicago did 3 years ago!

  2. Good pickup. Interesting to see who loses their 40 man spot. My bet is Wandy Peralta.

  3. I agree. Hope he gets traded at the deadline. If not, wasted money that should’ve gone to Luis Robert.

  4. Saw Greg Holland signed for around $7 mil with Rockies for 1 year plus vesting options. If this is what he has asking for, I’m glad Reds didn’t go for him. Reports are that deal could reach $14 mil if he meets all of his options (closing, etc.). He did take a one-year deal, which somewhat surprises me and fits Reds’ need but he made up for less years with more money.

    Feldman on the other hand looks like a smart deal. Go Reds!

    • Agree with all of this. That’s way too high for a guy coming of TJS. This also can help put the Bailey contract and salary in perspective. Bailey signed that deal as a healthy pitcher. Assuming Holland is still injured, the Rockies are still on the hook for $7-million big ones. If he’s fully healthy, he can make up to $14-million. That’s a ton of money for a closer, even a very good one.

  5. Not sure I see the upside. The one exception would be if putting Feldman in the pen would free Lorenzen up to move to the rotation. I don’t see him getting high leverage innings in the bullpen with Storen, Iglesias, and possibly Lorenzen there, so he’s not really a flip candidate. I’d rather see Stephenson and Reed fill in the back of the rotation. For the difference in salary I’m not sure he’s going to be that much more effective than Adelman to make it a wise investment as a swing man, and I would rather see Adelman get the chance. After a couple of nice moves I’m back to scratching my head with this one.

    • He is a flip candidate, but as a starter. If he has a decent 1st half (big “if”), any contending team that had a pitching injury and needs a 5th starter (several teams, likely) would be interested, I’d say.

      Certainly a gamble, but a cheap gamble. Those are the good kinds to take in baseball, I think.

      • But how do the Reds evaluate and sort Reed and Stephenson in the rotation if a journey-man pitcher is taking up innings/starts. The Straily trade was great on a few levels as it opened up a rotation spot and added value in prospects. Now with Castillo in AA rotation spots in the top two levels are crowded. One of Reed/Stephenson, Garrett, Romano, Davis, Adelman at AAA (maybe Arroyo) with Stephens, Travieso, and Mahle likely to repeat AA joined by Mella, Strahan, and Castillo. That’s already 11 guys plus maybe a depth signing. It would make so much more sense to try and get both Reed and Stephenson in the Reds rotation.

        • If the Reds seemed inclined to put all the youngsters in the rotation, I’d certainly agree with you. But it seems to me they have their heart set on keeping guys in the minors and having guys pitch out of the pen.

    • It’s another arm with big league experience added to the mix. I don’t know if this is how the FO and Price plan to proceed, but I hope they open up the rotation competition to everyone except those we know are slated as relievers — Storen, Wood, Iglesias. Obviously DeSclafani is in, as is Homer if he is healthy. But let the rest battle and earn their spots. The last thing they need to do is force or rush someone up to the bigs who isn’t ready. Let’s see if Stephenson can battle for a spot and win.

      • Well they’ve already come out and said he’ll be in rotation. New year, same pigeon-holing into roles.

  6. Ugh.

    This is incredibly discouraging, if accurate.

    Just don’t see the need to grant Feldman the SP role with: Bailey, DeSclafani, Finnegan, Garrett, Reed, Stephenson, Travesio, (plus Lorenzen, Adleman, Davis, others?)

    Maybe need Feldman if there is a rash of injuries? Sure. But what is possibly served by announcing this now. Need to give the young pitchers the major league starts.

    Feldman could well be an opportunity-eater, not an innings-eater.

    • The more I think about this, the more obvious it is that the Reds definitely intend on using Feldman in the rotation. An organization in the Reds situation doesn’t spend $2.3 million on a pitcher like Feldman if they don’t intend on using him to the fullest. This isn’t a minor league deal.

      Really, really discouraging. Step backward after a couple steps forward, even if they can flip him at the deadline. Developing young pitchers WAY more important. Plus, no guaranteed Feldman gets a return.

      • This is the EXACT signing they needed to do. Not arguing against any of your concerns, but to have a flip chip (or two if Storen pitches well) that adds yet another good bat or arm to the top 10 prospect list, is smart business and Felman is what a contending team with an ace but little depth will covet in July.

        Lets face it, after last year, I have little confidence any of the high prospects will pan out as soon as 2017. They’ll get plenty of work somewhere, either AAA, AA, MLB bullpen.

        We have so fallen in love with Lorenzen possibiity that we’ve clouded ourselves into thinking this is some stud SP, can’t miss pitcher. If he is consistently good and wants to start (or injuries force it), he’ll be starting at some point in the future. If he is better in short 2 or 3 inning stints, then maybe that’s where he is most valuable, it’s not like we don’t have a half dozen pitching prospects all as good or better (potential wise) as Lorenzen.

        • This assessment of Feldman is more rosy than warranted. He didn’t make it as a starter last year. Possible he gets a prospect or two in return, but also very possible he gets nothing of value. And the opportunity cost of 18 starts not getting to see how Reed, Stephenson and Garrett do against major league pitching, is too great.

          Please, enough with the false characterization of what people think about Lorenzen. No one is saying he is a “stud, can’t miss” pitcher. Just that he’s good enough that he should have a chance to prove whether he deserves to be in the rotation. This spring is the time for that, not next spring.

          And the signing of Feldman isn’t a problem if the Reds are open to him getting beaten out by promising springs from the young pitchers. My main fear is they’ve penciled him in for the fourth spot without an eraser. Jason Marquis. The $2.3 – $4.5 million salary speaks to that as well. That’s not a minor league contract.

    • I think you are overreacting. Bailey, DeSclafani, and Finnegan are locks but everyone else has work to do. Work probably best done in the minors. I think they have already made up their mind on Lorenzen, which I feel is a mistake, but I don’t think he is in the discussion anymore. BobSteve needs to consistently throw strikes and he can do so in the minors. Adleman is organizational filler, and Travieso and Davis shouldn’t even be on the radar yet. Reed and Garrett are two guys that really need to be on the MLB roster, but Garrett was very likely to remain in Louisville for until May or June anyway.

      There is also a decent shot that 2 of the 3 “locks” aren’t even wearing Reds uniforms by the end of July, so their logjam will probably sort itself out.

      • Where we disagree is on keeping Stephenson, Garrett and Reed in the minors. Two of them need to in the major league rotation on Opening Day. More time in AAA is wasted, one way or another.

        And even if your assessment turns out to be right, why prejudge this today and announce Feldman is the starter?

        Even if, in a normal circumstance, a couple of those young pitchers would start in AAA, this is the year the Reds need to get as much information and experience for them as possible.

        • I don’t think the likes of Scott Feldman is going to hold back Reed, Stephenson, or Garrett if they are dominating AAA. The nice thing about these cheap veteran rentals are that the organization doesn’t have the same sense of loyalty to the player as a guy that has been with the organization for years and years. I’m not sure if the organization is 100% sold on Brandon Finnegan as a starter, either.

          Garrett has less than 70 innings in AAA, and is still a pretty raw pitcher, and Stephenson still has basic consistency issues that he needs to work through. I don’t really want a repeat of Homer Bailey where the Reds pushed him too early and they wasted several years of service time Service time considerations are always a factor, doubly so when competing in 2018 seems unlikely. I guess what I’m saying is I don’t understand your sense of urgency.

        • Having Reed and Garrett in the starting rotation on opening may be rushing the latter like we perhaps did with the former. I think in regard to Stephenson though, now is his chance…if he can’t succeed, perhaps its time to cut bait.

      • CP makes some good points. The front office has been signalling they were going to sign a veteran starter, so the thought must be that some young pitchers will have innings limits. But yes, it does seem Lorenzen will be in the bullpen. 😦

        • I don’t think it’s a good strategy to limit your young starter’s innings by signing a journeyman starter to eat 200 innings at the major league level and deprive the young guys from getting that experience. I’d rather see the guys on innings limits get skipped occasionally, or use a 6 man rotation, or find some other way to be creative to work around those limits.

        • I don’t think this decision is about limiting innings. First of all, innings pitched in AAA count too.

          More importantly, it’s mostly about performance issues (Stephenson) and service time (Garrett).

        • Innings limits? Yes and no. The innings limits will be in April and early May. No use having Bailey pitch more than 5 or 6 innings in an outing early on in the year. Limit him in about his first 8 starts then turn him loose if there are no arm concerns. DeSclafani and Finnegan won’t be on any such regimen. Feldman won’t be until he starts to show some fatigue, which hopefully won’t come until after a flip. Stephenson shouldn’t be on any unless it is like Finnegan last year, stop at about 30 starts, or 165 IP’s. Past time for Stephenson to put on his big boy pants. Pretty much the same with Reed. I am pulling for Reed to be this year’s DeSclafani or Finnegan. Two years ago DeSclafani emerged, last year Finnegan emerged, and hopefully this year Reed emerges as a bona fide ML starter. It shouldn’t be an issue until September, and then the call-ups can pitch in.
          This is more a warning shot to Stephenson and Reed that they have guys in camp now who are going to compete hard with them for a rotation spot. That Stephenson and Reed have to go out and seize the job, not going to be handed to them. That might not be a bad thing.

      • Maybe Bailey is not ready. maybe he is still having issues coming back from his rehab. I know last year he got shut down earlier than they expected. Maybe this is insurance just in case Bailey is not ready to go yet.

    • I’m willing to bet part of the Reds negotiation here was telling Feldman he’d be given a rotation slot and the slot would be his to lose.

  7. I’m not real thrilled with the signing. The biggest downside I see is that this means Lorenzen won’t even get a shot at starting and it will limit the development of other young arms. Not a bad move if we were contending and needed a fifth starter or needed to wait on a young arm to get more time in the minor but neither of those two scenarios fit the Reds.

  8. After the Straily trade, we were just waiting for the other shoe to drop with the front office. One step forward, two steps back.
    The two steps back are:
    1. This kills any notion that Lorenzen will move to the rotation.
    2. This stunts the development of Reed and Stephenson.

    I would have much, much more preferred Travis Wood in this spot. At least a LH is needed in the bullpen and that might have helped.

    • Couldn’t spring training performances affect some of this? The F.O. and Price are making statements, but I would imagine that their minds could be changed when these guys start pitching in game situations.

  9. Feldman has been in decline since 2012 (at least per FIP and strikeout rates). Last year is the first year he’s shown improvement, and I’d bet that has more to do with being moved to the bullpen than because he actually got better. His strikeout rate returned to his 2012 rate, and that sounds like a guy who gained it by giving max effort for an inning as a reliever. Using him as a starter doesn’t make sense to me. Using him as a long man out of the pen who can make a spot start if needed, makes sense. Unfortunately it sounds like the Reds view him as a starter.

  10. Tom you are right the front office has ben saying this all along. It is just a shame that this is their mindset. And this after Price said last year that he saw no reason to limit innings

    • They also said that one of their top priorities was to open up playing time in the middle infield for Peraza and Herrera. Still waiting for some movement there. I wish they’d act on that instead of bringing in journey-men to delay development time.

      • A certain person refusing to be traded is blocking a lot of the middle infield prospects and there is no need by other teams for SS at this time.

        • Is a trade the only way to open playing time? If he has options to open playing time and doesn’t pursue them, he wasn’t serious about it to begin with.

  11. BTW I saw on MLB rumors that the Indians picked up Ricky Schaffer (Sp?) on waivers. The roster is back to 40.

    • Losing Selsky and now Shaffer puts a small hit on the RH bench bat that Williams was already looking to fill. He’ll have to bring in a couple on minor league deals now to ST.

    • Yeah, for this iteration of the Reds, I would not trade out Shaffer for Feldman. I think this is poor roster management. I’d have dropped Turner if the signing had to be made. He’s the most expendable on the roster.

  12. Not thrilled with this signing, but I’m skeptical Bailey can come back and stay healthy. FO probably thinking the same.

  13. Lets the young guys pitch at the big league level.Disco and Finnegan got that much needed experience and it paid off so lets give the rest a shot.Reed nor Stephensen having anything to prove in the minors.Not sure what the thought was in acquiring Feldman as it pertains to the future.

  14. Seems he may be getting innings we had expected to go to Stephenson, et al.
    Considering his career stats, age etc., can’t say this is an exciting move! Especially if FO is conceding him a rotation spot. What if BobSteve gas a great spring, or Garrett, or someone else? Seems like the kind of guy typically brought in for a ‘look see’, thrown back if not prove themselves in ST. Especially if Arroyo also in the mix!
    Think I will go check that thread!

  15. Not buying this or losing Selsky. Just when I was beginning to be a bit optimistic . . .

  16. For every strailly or alfredo 1.0 there’s an alfredo 2.0 that doesn’t work out. Need 1000 innings pitched by starters next year. Assuming Homer is good for more than about 120 is suspect. If you start running down the list you run out of MLB ready pitchers pretty quick even without injuries.

    You could say it’s backwards they tweeted he’s a starter in January or you could say they tweeted that to restate what they said to Feldman to get him to sign, and ultimately if he sucks then they won’t start him.

    I’m optimistic about the signing obviously.

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