In this ongoing series that will last most of spring training, we’re going to look at each player that will be in Major League camp with the Cincinnati Reds. Each post will have some information on the player. There will be some background information, profiling, projections, and more. To see all of the posts in the series, you can click here. Today we jump further into the 40-man roster, looking at reliever Jimmy Herget.

Jimmy Herget’s Background

Acquired: 6th round, 2015 draft.

Born: September 9, 1993

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Height/Weight: 6′ 3″ / 170 lbs

Years of MLB Experience: Zero.

Jimmy Herget was drafted out of high school in the 40th round by the Atlanta Braves. He chose to head to college, playing at South Florida for the next three years. The Reds selected the righty in the 6th round three years later in the 2015 draft. He has since worked his way up the Cincinnati farm system, stopping at four levels along the way, performing well above-average in each city he’s pitched.

Jimmy Herget’s 2018 Season

The entirety of Jimmy Herget’s 2018 season was spent at the Triple-A level with the Louisville Bats. His season would be a bit up-and-down in terms of monthly ERA’s. In April he posted an ERA of 1.00. In July he posted an ERA of 1.59. But in May, June, and August his ERA was 4.50, 4.22, and 4.91. The totality of the season saw him post a 3.47 ERA – which was the worst of his career (and speaks to just how good he’s been) – in 59.2 innings pitched. He allowed just five home runs, and he struck out 65 batters with 21 walks.

Jimmy Herget’s Playing History

At South Florida Jimmy Herget dominated as a starting pitcher. In three seasons he posted a 1.96 ERA in 302.1 innings. When the Cincinnati Reds drafted him they moved the lanky right-hander to the bullpen and he’s never looked back. With the Billings Mustangs in 2015 he posted a 3.20 ERA in the hitter friendly league over 24 appearances. The next year he jumped up to Advanced-A Daytona where he served as the closer and picked up 24 saves with a 1.78 ERA. In 2017 he split his season between Double-A Pensacola where he threw 29.2 innings with a 2.73 ERA and 16 saves, and Triple-A Louisville. With the Bats in 2017 he threw 32.0 innings, picked up 9 more saves, and had an ERA of 3.06. In 2018, as noted above, he spent the entire year in Triple-A with Louisville.

Projecting Jimmy Herget for 2019

The projection systems that took a chance to project Jimmy Herget were pretty close in the rate stats. ZiPS projected the right-handed reliever for significantly more playing time.

ZiPS Projections | Steamer Projections | Marcels Projections

How could Jimmy Herget fit in Cincinnati in 2019?

The bullpen is crowded, and at this point it seems unlikely that Jimmy Herget has a spot out of spring training. An injury could change that, of course. For now it seems likely that Herget heads to Triple-A, but given him past performance and new-found spot on the 40-man roster, he could be the first guy to be called up if and when a reliever is eventually needed in Cincinnati.

4 Responses

  1. CP

    This guy may never be a R. Iglesias type in the bullpen, but there is a reasonable chance he could have seasons like Hughes just had for us last year, and that is extremely valuable! I look for Herget to get a shot at some point this year when there is an opening and hopefully never look back. Having a reliable, cost controlled quality arm in the bullpen has a lot of value.

    The bullpen could end up being a landing spot for many of these guys that we feel like haven’t fulfilled their potential in the rotation. I think we have all seen the value of having a strong bullpen with the way baseball is going now.

  2. Hammer

    Any idea why the Reds decided to move him from starting to the bullpen? Does he have a decent pitch mix? It seems like their MO had generally been to try to move people from the bullpen to starting. Just wondering what the difference was here.

    • Doug Gray

      He’s got strange mechanics, and is thin as a rail. Tough to envision a guy like that starting at the MLB level.

      • Hammer

        I’m not trying to inject any hyperbole, or draw any comparisons, but couldn’t something similar be said for Chris Sale? I just think it odd that the Reds never gave him a chance to develop as a starter, considering their track record of developing starting pitchers. Am I totally off base here? It won’t hurt my feelings if you simply tell me yes; but I’m just curious, especially when I see his success through the minors. I haven’t followed closely, so I don’t know if there was something else they had considered in their decision. Thank you for your reply.