When the Cincinnati Reds acquired pitcher Jose De Leon from Tampa last winter, the hope was that the now 27 year old was again healthy, and again one of the more promising arms in the game. Baseball America ranked him as high as the #23 prospect in all baseball prior to the 2016 season, and prior to the 2017 season he was still highly regarded.
Injuries, though, have limited him to a grand total of 23.2 IP at the big league level so far, and he’s bounced around several teams as a result. When right, though, there’s still a pile of potential in his right arm, and today the Cincinnati Reds called him up to see just what he’s got.
It’s a potential redemption story for De Leon, as just 6.2 of those big league innings have come since the 2016 season. Of course, the other end of that transaction brings to a quick close what was hopefully set to be a redemption story for Brooks Raley, who returned to the big leagues with the Reds this season after a handful of seasons spent plying his trade in South Korea.
Unfortunately for Raley, the lefty’s stint with the Reds was rocky, as he yielded 4 ER in the 4 IP he logged for them. That’s just one part of a bullpen that has so far struggled to a 5.84 ERA through 12 games, and the Reds are clearly looking for answers to back their brilliant starting pitching.
It’s a swap of a lefty for a righty, but the Reds do still have Amir Garrett and Cody Reed as lefty options in the bullpen, even if Reed has had similar struggles again this year.