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 pitcher Tyler Mahle.
Tyler Mahle’s Background
Acquired: 7th round, 2013 draft.
Born: September 29, 1994
Height/Weight: 6′ 3″ / 210 lbs
Years of MLB Experience: Two.
Drafted out of high school, Tyler Mahle took several years working his way up through the minor leagues. While doing so he threw both a no-hitter and a perfect game, dominating most of his minor league career. In late 2017 he was called up to Cincinnati to make his debut and he started four games. Last year he spent most of 2018 in the Reds rotation, but saw some action in Triple-A in August.
Tyler Mahle’s 2018 Season
The season started out well for Tyler Mahle as he allowed just one hit in 6.0 shutout innings to begin the year against the Cubs. But he allowed 10 earned runs over his next two starts that spanned 10.0 innings. He really settled in after that for the next two-and-a-half months. Over his next 15 starts he posted a 3.28 ERA in 82.1 innings with 83 strikeouts for Cincinnati. But right before the All-Star break he hit a rough stretch and only made it out of the third inning in one of his next four starts.
That led to the Reds optioning the young right-handed pitcher to Triple-A in early August. He finished out the minor league season with the Louisville Bats, making five starts with a 2.73 ERA. He would come back up to Cincinnati in September and make one start on the 9th, but that was the final time he would appear during the season.
Tyler Mahle’s Playing History
After being drafted the Reds kept Tyler Mahle back in Goodyear to pitch for their complex level rookie team. He posted a 2.36 ERA in 34.1 innings there. The next year he moved up to Billings in the hitter friendly Pioneer League. While there he allowed 5 home runs and posted a 3.87 ERA with 15 walks and 71 strikeouts in 76.2 innings. The next year he would move up to Low-A Dayton and that’s when he had a true breakout year on the statsheet. As a 20-year-old he posted a 2.43 ERA in 152.0 innings with 25 walks and 135 strikeouts. In 2016 he moved up to Daytona and once again dominated, posting a 2.50 ERA in the first half, earning a promotion to Double-A Pensacola.
That promotion, though, was what led to the first time that Tyler Mahle struggled. He made 14 starts in the second half with Pensacola and posted a 4.92 ERA. The big difference was that his home run rate basically doubled. The next year he returned to Double-A and went off, posting a 1.59 ERA in the first half before being promoted to Triple-A Louisville. He picked up where he left off with a 2.73 ERA in 10 more starts there before joining Cincinnati in September.
Projecting Tyler Mahle for 2019
Two of the projection systems are about the same for Tyler Mahle, except in the innings pitched category. Marcels like his ERA quite a bit better, though his peripherals are pretty similar.
How could Tyler Mahle fit in Cincinnati in 2019?
When spring training began, Tyler Mahle was not one of the five starters named by David Bell as in the rotation. That left open the question of what role he’d be in. But as so frequently happens in the spring, injuries pop up. Alex Wood doesn’t look like he’s going to be ready to start the season on time, which may open up a shot for Mahle to grab a starting spot – at least to begin the year. It’s tough to say after that, as all kinds of things could happen. What does seem likely, though, is that wherever he’s at, he’s going to be viewed as a starter.