It was a busy day this afternoon at Great American Ballpark. The Cincinnati Reds made several roster moves, with perhaps the biggest being the release of outfielder Matt Kemp. Acquired in the trade with the Dodgers over the winter, Kemp had been a 4th outfield option for the Reds, but was being worked into the lineup somewhat regularly in the corners. He was hitting .200/.210/.283 in 62 plate appearances before breaking a rib when he collided with the wall and was placed on the injured list. His release opens up a spot on the 40-man roster – though for now, that spot remains open.

Cincinnati also made some 25-man roster moves. With the bullpen being used plenty last night in an extra-innings loss, the Reds recalled left-handed pitcher Cody Reed from Triple-A. He had a 3.21 ERA for the Louisville Bats in 14.0 innings with 1 home run allowed, 6 walks, and 19 strikeouts. His ground ball rate was also an incredibly high 68% on the season for Louisville.

Scott Schebler was the 25-man roster casualty on the other side of the Reed move. The outfielder was hitting just .123/.253/.222 on the season for the Reds over his 95 total plate appearances. His BABIP was the worst in baseball at .154, so it’s not likely he was nearly as bad as the line suggests – but he had clearly been struggling much of the year after a torrid spring training.

58 Responses

  1. Hanawi

    Assuming that VanMeter or O’Grady will be up soon? Though I guess they could call up Ervin too.

    • Seat101

      Is there a financial settlement of some sort with Matt Kemp? Is he still able to use Redleg facilities and medical staff? How does this work?

      • Gaffer

        He is gone, we pay him. If he gets signed by someone else, maybe we get back prorated minimum. That’s it.

      • Steve Mancuso

        After 10 days he becomes a free agent. No ties to the Reds.

  2. CI3J

    Can’t say any of these moves are unwarranted. Hope Schebs gets it together in Louisville. Good riddance to Kemp. Hope Duke is next.

    • matthew hendley

      DW says that LOU trip is temporary IOT work on some Mechanical changes that ‘would be hard to implement in the Majors’ he is expected back ‘soon’.

      • RojoBenjy

        Dear DW,

        I hope the talk of Schebler returning soon is just polite and professional courtesy. Unless the young man starts hitting like his new teammates O’Grady and VanMeter, I really cringe to think of him gracing the dugout in GABP anymore.

        P.S.
        Thank goodness that neither O’Grady nor VanMeter play outfield, or else SS would be stealing their playing time down there.

      • Doug Gray

        Both of them play the outfield…. They just haven’t been playing as much of it this year.

      • E

        There are still some quality atms that were not signed. If the front office is serious, throw some money to shore up the liability no one saw. The bullpen sucks

  3. matthew hendley

    I would bet Ervin as soon as the BP is stabilized. VanMeter and O’Grady would need a position change and some practice to be brought up as an OF option. Kemp release catches everyone by surprise. I expected a little longer of a look, but, I understand just releasing him as well. The Reds will have to eat the remaining money of course. Minus the Min rate that which ever team signs him, (and for league minimum they will sign him).

    • Hanawi

      Both O’Grady and VanMeter played a lot of OF last year. Either could easily slot into LF.

      • matthew hendley

        well the slot is there. What are their handedness?

      • Shchi Cossack

        Both VanMeter and O’Grady hit LH.

        O’Grady has over 1000 innings @ 1B, LF & CF as a professional.
        VanMeter has 1800 innings at 2B, 1400 innings at 3B, 800 innings at SS & 500 innings in LF.

        I’m in no rush to promote either O’Grady or VanMeter if they are just going to ride the bench. I would rather they get regular playing time in AAA this season and see if their recent short term success holds true for the long term.

    • burtgummer

      VanMeter has played all positions except catcher,centerfield and of course pitcher
      Personally I’d like to see Schebler dfa’ed and then go from there

      • lwblogger2

        Wow! Look, I’m not the guy’s biggest fan but he’s having one awful season in a fairly successful MLB career. When the Reds got him, I thought he was a pretty good 4th OF option. Then he hit better than I expected, showing a very nice amount of power. It made me think that maybe, assuming health, he was a starting MLB OF. Now, I question that, especially on this team but I still think there is no way he’s not a good option as a #4 OF. He’s just in a horrendous slump and it has happened at the beginning of the year when there is no way it goes unnoticed.

        For his career, Schebler has put up a .240/.318/.443 slash line. That is about league average offense and that counts a horrible 2019 thus far. He’s done it over 4 seasons and 1378 plate appearances. That’s enough of a track record to suggest that he’s going to hit considerably better than he has so far in 2019. He just needs to work on some stuff and get out of his own head. I think the demotion is the right thing to do and the Reds should give a proven MLB player a chance to sort things out in AAA if there is an option to do so.

        The Reds did exactly the right thing here and there is a good chance Schebler rewards them by being a solid player again.

  4. D Ray White

    How does Wandy Peralta still have a roster spot?

    • Hanawi

      Bell can’t have too many relievers on the roster.

    • FreeHouse

      Peralta has more upside than Duke so the question is how does Zach Duke have a roster spot?

      • Colorado Red

        Must agree there. Wandy (except for yesterday), has not been bad. Duke has stunk all year.

    • JayTheRed

      Overall Peralta has pitched pretty well this early season. I see no reason to remove him at this point.

    • greenmtred

      He’s mostly been effective this year. SSS, of course, but Duke is more deserving of scrutiny for now.

  5. Shchi Cossack

    I did not see the Kemp move coming…yet…but the writing was on the wall for eventually being moved or released. I expect the Reds tried to move him at any cost, but found no takers. Kemp just offered no defensive flexibility and Winker has staked a claim on LF with his recent offensive surge.

    I like seeing Reed added to the bullpen, but a 9-man bullpen and a 3-man bench remains excessive and inflexible. Hopefully we will see an adjustment in bullpen management by DB and an additional roster adjustment forthcoming involving Duke and possibly Peralta.

    Opening a 40-man roster spot becomes intriguing, but I believe Ervin represents the next man up if a 25-man roster spot opens. He has the defensive flexibility that Kemp lacked.

    With Schebler optioned to AAA, the Reds bench becomes strictly RH (Casalli, Farmer & Peraza with Dietrich starting at 2B hopefully), but Schebler provides no offensive flexibility until he works out his issues at the plate.

    After watching Senzel’s defensive performance in CF yesterday and his professional plate approach and demeanor, I don’t see much playing time available in the OF beyond the 3 starters going forward.

    • burtgummer

      Keep in mind they can use Lorenzen to ph also

      • Eric

        …and as another outfielder, if needed.

    • Doc

      Didn’t Peralta have a strong 2017, then a difficult 2018? He has had one bad outing this year, so I think he has earned a longer look. Iglesius has had more bad outings than good but no one seems to advocate sending him down.

      What sticks out to me is that despite having Capt Hook III, or is it IV, they do not have a couple of long men they can use. Why aren’t Stephenson, and maybe Reed, stretched out to handle three innings. Why ruin your bullpen and effectively have a 2 or 3 man pen then next game because you run people out there from one pitch to one inning at a time, starting in the sixth, then bemoan that your bullpen is weak.

      The one good thing about the three man bench is that if really cuts down Bell’s ability to make so many whimsical, non-sensical moves.

      • JayTheRed

        Well you got your wish Saturday night. Reed pitched 2 2/3 innings and did a pretty good job I thought.

    • ToBeDetermined

      Shchi

      Agreed. I currently see 3 starting OFs and some late inning flexibility in OF.
      Also, looks to be the INF seems to be taking shape with Peraza the odd man out currently.

      As I mentioned about a week ago DB needs to eventually settle on a typical starting lineup, those starters will be given a day off here or there. We appear to be at that moment.

  6. Curt

    Wow, maybe I was too quick to say this was the same old gutless FO. Bold move. Proactive not reactive. Any of the “big” teams would have done the same. I was rooting for Kemp but yeah, I don’t think he really wanted to be here and since he didn’t bring any of last years fire, was dead weight. It was a long shot that they were gonna get something out of swapping Homer’s money for Kemp’s money anyway. Though they still could, if Puig rights himself and becomes a long term solution in right field. Score one for the front office for not sitting on the fence. Moving on…

    • JayTheRed

      Puig has a history of slower starts and he warms up once the weather does. I think we might be seeing signs of him warming up cause the balls he is hitting they are just flying off the bat at over 100 mph the past few days. He did have a pretty good night at the plate tonight too.

  7. Old-school

    Farmer and Dietrich and Peraza extreme versatility. Let’s not forget Mr Lorenzen.

  8. WVRedlegs

    That is two thirds of the Opening Day outfield off the roster entirely.
    Puig is next. I think they are working on a trade for Puig, and lady night is a step in the right direction for trading him.
    There is help at Louisville. Vanmeter and O’Grady both hit LH and throw RH. Vanmeter just turned 24 in March. O’Grady turns 27 in 2 weeks. Vanmeter plays all around the INF and corner OF. O’Grady plays all 4 OF spots and corner INF. Vanmeter and O’Grady have been hitting well since last July. They have been doing it for a while now. Vanmeter is really coming into his own at 2B. The 2B of the very, very near future.

    • WVRedlegs

      All 4 OF positions? All 3. I guess all 4 when Bell uses the OF shift.

    • Indy Red Man

      Puig is next? What? They’ve needed more right-handed thump for several years now? Suarez can’t do it all. Puig will get it going and his big arm plays huge in little gabp. He can just cut it loose from the wall and have a shot at guys.

    • Doc

      Not sure I knew there were four OF spots.

    • JayTheRed

      I have to disagree with you Puig isn’t going anywhere soon. If the Reds are sucking and they feel like they can’t get him at a decent price for a extension then they may try to move him at the deadline. I hope that is not the case.

    • Steven Ross

      Puig is next? I’ll professionally disagree and leave it at that. Van Meter gets the call up. Glad to see Kemp released. Now it’s all Winker in LF. Sending Schebler down was an easy decision. Honestly, I like Scott but it’s time to move him. I no longer see a future for him on this team with Senzel now in CF.

  9. Steve Mancuso

    Neither the Kemp move nor the timing are surprising.

    Kemp was never in the long-term plan of the Reds. From the start, Kemp was just reciprocal salary burden for Bailey. Nothing more.

    The Reds took a month to see whether Kemp had anything left. He did have a couple really strong months last year. March/April 145 wRC+, May 154 wRC+ for example. First half 137 wRC+, second half 97 wRC+. Kemp didn’t show anything this year. His underlying hitting stats are terrible.

    Now that Nick Senzel is both healthy and has some CF experience and with Jesse Winker hitting like he does, there was no need for Kemp.

    Putting Yasiel Puig in the same category as Kemp is a huge mistake. Puig is hitting the ball hard. He’s pressing and will come around and add value. He’s also above average on defense, where Kemp was a huge liability.

    • Drrobo

      How did Kemp fit in? Perhaps I am reading more into it than what was actually said but Williams comments came across to me as he was not good for the clubhouse chemistry.

      • matthew hendley

        He was bad, I think that’s it. The reds gave him a chance and he wasn’t good, I don’t think its anything more then that. When senzel came up he probably saw the writing on the wall and asked for his release.

  10. Old-school

    #trusttheoutfield

    Bold move and the right move by the FO to go all in with Winker/Senzel/Puig.

    Schebler still gets to write his script.

  11. TR

    A good move. I like, what I hope becomes, the regular outfield of Winker, Senzel, Puig. I also think Puig will come around, and I get the feeling he likes playing for the Reds. He has a strong arm which is important for a right fielder and I think he’ll hold down that corner for the next few years.

    • Wayne nabors

      i agree, like that outfield to,plum silly that its not been them 3 since opening day,would have a few more wins

  12. Redsfandownunder

    Kemp would look good in Royal’s Blue with Homer Bailey.

    • matthew hendley

      Speaking of someone on the way to their 3rd win. Currently putting it to the Tigers right now.

      • redsfandownunder

        LOL. And if Zach Duke can get another win for the Reds today, he’ll have his 3rd also.

      • matthew hendley

        True on the surface, however bailey, short of some hiccups has actualy been pitching passable baseball. Duke is a right place right time winner

      • matthew hendley

        Bailey, 6IP 2ER, 2 BB 4K, the Royals are winning….oh look at that, 11-2

      • ToBeDetermined

        Bailey can go be a 20 game winner for all I care.
        He wasn’t going to be part of the long-term plans of the Reds.

        It’s funny that Bailey was traded by the Reds to Dodgers and was cut.
        Now Kemp traded from Dodgers to Reds and has been cut.
        And Reds got $7million from Dodgers.

        So really it has nothing to do with the performances of either Bailey or Kemp. It has to do with did the Reds gain payroll flexibility with this move ? And I think the answer has been yes to both the Reds and Dodgers.

  13. SabrChris

    With reports the Scooter is progressing fast than expected I wonder if they leave the 40 spot open for bring him off the 60 day IL.

    • matthew hendley

      Possible, leaving it empty for 2-3 weeks.

      • matthew hendley

        also Ervin, must stay in the minors 10 days before he is recalled.

    • ToBeDetermined

      Sabr
      Can you bring someone off the 60 day IL ?
      I thought that meant they have to stay on the 60 day IL for 60 days.
      Now, I think you can backdate the starting date of that, which I assume would be when he got injured ? ?

  14. Roger Garrett

    Obvious moves that just had to be made.Reed was a head scratcher to being with because he adds swing and miss stuff to the pen.Shows some guts by releasing Kemp but he has nothing left to offer.Hopefully Scott will regain his stroke but the 3 guys starting in the outfield have more to offer now and in the future.Good moves that provide stability and somewhat of a plan as we play on this season.Go Reds.

  15. David

    Here are some 2019 wOBA/xwOBA:

    Schebler 0.225/0.241
    Peraza 0.223/0.218
    Kemp 0.210/0.195

    According to xwOBA, Schebler has only been marginally unlucky and Kemp actually had some luck on his side. Schebler and Peraza have each logged about 100 PA. Miserable.

  16. JayTheRed

    I am wondering what is up with Peraza. He showed some nice promise last season. Shrugs… Hope he can turn it around some.

    • lost11found

      Players like peraza are going to have some ugly slumps, but if he plays good d. The value will probably be there when added up at the end of the season.

      • ToBeDetermined

        Regarding Peraza
        Someone on the game thread last night mentioned that Senzel in 2 games has the same number of walks as Peraza this whole season.

        I think Jose knows what he needs to work on. With out significant improvement in pitch recognition Peraza is going to find it tough going at the plate