Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 4", Weight: 240 lb.
The stork carrying beautiful, tiny baby Ross arrived at the Ohlendorf household on the 8th day of August, 1982. It was a very generous stork, and blessed the child with talents of both the athletic and intellectual variety. Ohlendorf is Princeton-educated, and in 2004, the Arizona Diamondbacks (then just a six year-old child themselves) made him a 4th round draft pick.
He moved quickly through the D-Backs' system before being sent to the Yankees as part of a trade that brought Randy Johnson back to the desert. Just one year later, Ohlendorf was part of another trade, this time being one of the pieces sent to the Pirates in exchange for Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte. He was a mainstay in Pittsburgh's rotation for two seasons before running into troubles that led to his release in 2011. Since then, six teams have signed Ohlendorf to free agent contracts, the most recent of which was Your Cincinnati Reds, as of last week.
Ohlendorf claims he had multiple offers for his services after the Royals released him this month, but hand-picked the Reds, telling the Enquirer, "I just felt like it was a good opportunity where I could pitch meaningful innings and help young guys if the opportunity presents itself."
Whole lot to unpack here.
The Reds' pitching situation, particularly in April, is growing more dire by the day. Ohlendorf is the kind of guy that can help with that. With the rotation a mess, and the bullpen looking God-fricken-attrocious in the spring (lots of small sample sizes add up to one very sad medium sample size), a veteran with over 500 innings of big-league experience is someone who at the very least should be able to provide some consistency. It could quite likely be very "meh" production, but as long as it's not too Greggish, it'll work for now.
Ohlendorf also carries with him some flexibility, with a fastball that could profile nicely in the 8th inning, but the stamina that could allow the Reds to use him in a long relief situation. And, as with any veteran the Reds bring in to help out, there's always that sliver of hope that he has a pleasantly surprising first half that leads to them being able to flip him for a couple of youngsters in July.
Regardless, be excited to see him in a Reds uniform. Be excited to see anyone in a Reds uniform (well, almost anyone). Because if you're seeing someone in a Reds uniform, it means baseball is happening. Opening Day is less than a week away, people. Let's play ballendorf.