The Reds announced that Rookie Davis has been optioned to AAA Louisville.

No word yet on who takes Davis’ spot in the rotation. Could be Robert Stephenson or a few other guys. Cody Reed was demoted on May 4. He can be called back May 14. Since the Reds are using a 4-man rotation in Amir Garrett’s absence, Davis’ next turn would be on Saturday, May 13. Bronson Arroyo is pitching Thursday, Scott Feldman is starting Friday and Davis is still listed as the probable starter for Saturday’s game.

Update: Not Stephenson

AAA candidates include:

Jackson Stephens (22) last pitched May 5. Stephens was drafted in the 18th round by the Reds in 2012. ERA is 5.97.

Lisalverto Bonilla (26) last pitched May 7. Bonilla has already been a free agent twice and the Reds took him off waivers in February from the Pirates. He was called up once already this season, faced the Cubs and pitched 5 innings of relief, striking out 6. Bonilla was sent back to AAA the next day. His ERA at Louisville is 5.61.

Asher Wojciechowski just pitched last night, so he can’t be ready for Saturday.

The only other names of starting pitchers on the 40-man roster are Luis Castillo (24) and Keury Mella (23) who are pitching for AA-Pensacola. If either of them get the call, whoa.

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Join the conversation! 50 Comments

  1. Hmm, thought it would be Stephenson to join the rotation to take Rookie’s spot. A AAA guy? Big Sal coming back? If not Sal then it might be the new guy Wojo.

  2. Rookie Davis’ next start would have been the 13th at San Francisco. Unlikely that Reed makes start since Adleman is already being pushed back early on 4 days rest because of 4 man rotation and Reed can’t be swapped for Davis straight up (spot comes a day too early). So, the Stephenson idea is probably what will happen, though Reds could call up Reed to rotation also and just rearrange rotation.

    Of course, Reed did not perform well in his last start in AAA and didn’t exactly play himself back into rotation.

    • Stephenson being the choice to fill Rookie’s spot could also be one explanation why Reds have not made corresponding move yet. They may wait to see who is rested from Louisville on Thursday and move them into pen.

    • Hope Reed doesn’t turn into another Cingrani

  3. No surprises here. It was bound to happen sooner or later. I like the mindset of throw strikes or be demoted. My guess is whoever comes up has a history of high k to ball ratio… Someone on Doug’s latest list

  4. The two demotions – Garrett and Davis – coming at the same time is strange. It’s putting a crunch on starting pitchers for the Reds, even with the two off days. Again, surprised if this was planned that they didn’t coordinate this with Stephenson and/or Reed moving into the rotation.

    Davis didn’t pitch that poorly against the Yankees after the first inning.

    • Reed and Stephenson would both need to be stretched out before being put in the rotation.

      • Stephenson pitched 3 innings in his last appearance. He could go five. But yeah, ideally he’d have a couple longer appearances before a start.

    • Yeah, I get the Garrett thing (especially if they are truly going to skip his starts) if you are that concerned about service time, but might as well let Davis get one more shot at least until a true prospect is ready. Seems silly to have a struggling AAA pitcher replace him while Davis is still trying to acclimate.

  5. My guess is Bonilla, since he’s been up with the Reds once and pitched five innings in a game vs. the Cubs. Bonilla is 26. This might be a scheduled try-out for Bonilla. Give him a couple starts to see what he has.

    • My guess as well is Bonilla

    • Jackson Stephens is also on the 40 man and after a couple very rough early starts he has been solid lately. He is more in the mold of the Tim Adleman pitchability guy with decent control and a little bit of velo.

      • didn’t make it through the first inning today. Gave a 6 runs in 2/3 of a inning.

    • Bonilla makes too much sense given the way they’ve (mis)handled the starting pitching to date 😉

  6. My vote is for Austin Ross at AA. He pitched Sunday and has a 0.87 era at Pensacola. He had a 3.89 era (71 ip) in the PCL (AAA) last year which is pretty decent for that league. I seriously doubt any of our starters besides Garrett or Adleman could do that in the PCL.

  7. Is Sal Romano not an option? Is he on the DL?

    • Yep….and we don’t do no stinking 10 or 15 day DLs….we do it up right! “Its a precautionary measure….nothing serious” Like the Serbs shooting Ferdinand was nothing serious.

    • Romano is on the AAA DL. Believe I heard yesterday that either he has either started or is about to start throwing on flat ground. He appears weeks away from game pitching even with no setbacks or delays.

  8. Price absolutely telegraphed the Davis move yesterday in his pregame radio segment with MB. I was listening while wrapping up my cardio work. Price sounded so much like the typical “why we sent him down speech” that I hustled to my PC to see if Davis had indeed been optioned late yesterday so if need be I could update the RLN pregame post to reflect the fact.

    Given they’ve made the move today, it is curious they didn’t do it yesterday to get an extra bat or arm for Tuesday’s game.

    • That is what I was thinking, when you put Kivelhan as late inning defensive double switch- glad that did not come back to bite them as he has looked horrible in the OF but at least Iglesias di not have to bat

  9. Possible alternative scenario….. Perhaps the Saturday starter isn’t yet officially in the Reds org? Could they be waiting for something like a waiver claim or trade to officially finalize; but, had to go on and announce the Davis move because they didn’t want to fly him to California just to turn around and fly him back to where ever Louisville would be playing? And (gulp) what veteran free agents or guys with walk away minor league deals might be lurking around.

    • You might be on to something. There are several pitchers in DFA limbo at this very time. Maybe they are working on something.
      As for any free agents, Fister is the only one I can think of still out there. That is possible but not very probable.

      • From memory this is about the time of year guys on MiLB deals with a minimum commitment of 30 season days are in their window where they have to decide whether to walk away or stay. It would be a long shot for this to happen because not only would the guy have to be in a walk away status, his work days would have to line up for to pitch Saturday.

        I think a trade either DFA related or not would be more likely.

    • SPs/swingmen in DFA limbo or free agents:

      Henderson Alvarez
      Doug Fister
      Matt Harrison
      Edwin Jackson
      Colby Lewis
      Tim Lincecum
      Jarrod Parker
      Jake Peavy
      Alfredo Simon
      C.J. Wilson
      Jose Valdez
      Adam Wilk
      Casey Lawrence

  10. Louisville is playing right now (noon Wednesday); Jackson Stephens made the start for them. scratch him from the Saturday possibilities.

  11. Why not Tyler Mahle? Could he be another Mike Leake story, just jump from the low minors straight to the show?

    • Just about to post the same thing.

      I’m sure there are reasons not to, but screw it. This season is fun, so let’s have some more fun!

    • Mahle would also require an additional move to get him onto the 40 man roster. Doesn’t make it show stopper to call him up but does make it much less likely.

      • I still think that is the correct move. Mahle has been incredible in AA this year. Why not call him up? But indeed, he is presently NOT on the 40 man roster.
        Make room! Make room!

  12. Bonilla’s days might line up, but his stat do not. Fairly brutal at AAA and Cincy. Lets bring on Wojciechowski. Wojo at AAA, a 0.92 ERA, 2.37 FIP, 3.01 xFIP, 0.76 WHIP, 10.98 K/9, and more importantly 2.28 BB/9.
    Bonilla at AAA, 5.61 ERA, 5.23 FIP, 3.65 xFIP, 1.20 WHIP, 9.47 K/9, 3.16 BB/9.
    Someone has earned a shot, and someone has not.
    But that isn’t what the decision will come down to. 40-man roster implications will be in play as well as options. If Wojo doesn’t have any options left, it wouldn’t be prudent to send him up for a couple of starts, then have to DFA him to send him down when Garrett comes back.

    • And Wojo would require a 40 man corresponding move to get him on. Moving Nefi Ogando to the 60 day DL might be an easy way to make room. I have no idea how close he is to being ready to pitch but he’s been on the 10 day DL since April 2.

      • We could likely DFA Bonillla and pass him through waivers. Same could likely be said for Jackson Stephens and Keury Mella. I suppose a team with a weak 40 man roster like ours was last year might grab them, but it may be worth the risk. I wouldn’t be opposed to giving Wojo a shot.

  13. If it’s not Stephenson, then all signs seem to point to Bonilla.

    But could they possibly start Adleman on Saturday, then call up Reed for Sunday once he’s eligible? I know that would be short rest (3 days) for Adleman, but he only threw 5 innings and 83 pitches last night, so his arm shouldn’t be too worn out.

  14. Stephenson deserved a shot at this. Inconsistent but stuff is as good as anybody when on.

    • As Steve pointed out above, the issue with Stephenson is likely that he has been in the pen so long that he would need to be “stretched out” before going into the rotation. To that I would, that he certainly isn’t going to get stretched out on the MLB roster; and, no more than he is being used, this is starting to look like a lost season for him. .

      • Don’t you think going 5 is realistic after 3 innings Sat? That is an average start for this staff and above average for Rookie’s spot

  15. Other than wondering who starts Saturday, this was a move that needed to be made. I like Rookie, and he looks to eventually be a serviceable #3 / #4 starter for the Reds, but he is simply not ready right now.

    And yes, my preference would be to give the start to Stephenson as well. But apparently that ship has sailed…

    • I think Rookie profiles best long term in the way they were using Reed and Stephenson this year. A long reliever who can go 3-4 IP if needed, but his stuff may play up used in shorter stints.

    • Sailed never to return? If they are working intensively with him, I’m not so sure. Plus 2 three inning appearances in a row may well be intended to let him test what he’s learning.

  16. The next time Cody Reed or Crash and Burn Davis gets another shot at the show should be 2018. Though strikes or throw burgers for a living.

    • Totally agree. These guys are rookies, not veterans. You walk people, you go back to Louisville. As much as I’ve been riding Bronson, he’s a veteran lobbing soft toss in there but still knows loud outs will keep you around longer than free passes.

      I have high hopes for Reed (less so Rookie and Bob Steve), but coddling psyches is for the birds. Fine tune your skills or tell your story walking!

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About Steve Mancuso

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky's Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.


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