FanGraphs' Eno Sarris got a chance to talk with new Cincinnati Reds pitcher Anthony DeSclafani about his pitch repertoire, and as is protocol for Eno, it's a great read. They spoke a lot about his off-speed pitches and how they've developed and been tweaked as DeSclafani has advanced through the professional ranks, and the two ultimately talked about the evolution of his change-up. When broken down at this level, it's a pitch that seems to have all the components of being a dominant one, and it's a pitch that DeSclafani seems to have growing confidence in. If so, it very well could be that "out pitch" that will be a perfect complement to a strike-thrower like him who consistently finds himself ahead in counts. Let's just hope he was holding it back yesterday against the Padres.
The Miami Marlins have released former Reds bullpen stalwart Nick Masset. Masset, of course, was picked up in the trade that sent Ken Griffey, Jr. to the Chicago White Sox, and from 2008-2011 was a member of the Reds. His 3 year stretch from '09 through '11 was particularly stellar, as he cleared 70 IP in all three seasons while posting a combined ERA+ of 130 in the 231 games in which he appeared, but that workload ultimately led to a series of shoulder injuries and surgeries that he's struggled to return from. Masset threw 45 rough innings for the Colorado Rockies in 2014 and again got battered in spring with Miami, but his track record will likely get him at least a minor league shot with some team. If you'll remember, when he's right, his curve ball is one of the absolute best pitches in the game.
Over at Reds.com, Mark Sheldon spoke with Devin Mesoraco in the wake of his leg cramp/pull/scare, and it sounds as though Mes should be back in short order. If you're at all like me, watching him spike his helmet after pulling up lame rounding 3B the other day brought back instant memories of when he similarly pulled his hammy rounding 3B last year and ended up on the DL, so hearing that it's nothing similar is obviously awesome news. At this point, I fully expect him to be ready for Opening Day.
ICYMI, the Chicago Cubs sent uber-prospect Kris Bryant to minor league camp, effectively sealing that he'll start the season not with the big league club just like every single other uber-prospect ever of all time ever in existence ever forever ever. That the MLBPA is making such a big deal about this is rather hilarious, as CBS Sports' Mike Axisa notes, since Bryant's not on the 40 man roster and therefore not even a member of the MLBPA itself. Two weeks in the minors for an entire extra year of service time is a no-brainer for the Cubs, for one, and there's every reason to believe the Cubs think he'll be a better, more polished player at age 29 than he will be at age 23. It's all just Scott Boras doing his best to shake the system, something he's become quite adept at.
Finally, the Boston Red Sox officially put Christian Vazquez on the 60-day DL yesterday, meaning that former Red and oft-traveled (of late) catcher Ryan Hanigan is in line to be the primary catcher in Beantown for a team that's got big post-season hopes. For what it's worth, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe doesn't see it as too big of a deal, and frankly, I'm happy that Hanny has landed in such a promising situation.