The last time most of us watched Tim Adleman on a professional mound, he was leading the 2017 Cincinnati Reds pitching staff in both IP and K, with 122.1 and 108 of each, respectively.
Of course, I wouldn’t fault you for not wanting to remember much at all about those 2017 Reds. Aside from Luis Castillo in his first emergence, not a single other pitcher who started more than 4 games had an ERA under 4.68, and that was from Robert Stephenson - and we all know how that partnership with the Reds ended. Bronson Arroyo had his swan song, Homer Bailey fired 91 IP of 6.43 ERA ball, Opening Day Starter Scott Feldman [TM] was a thing, and Deck McGuire was the closest thing to a revelation on the entire staff.
From there, Adleman took a tour of the Korean Baseball Organization before returning to the states in the minors of the Detroit Tigers system for 2019, and in 2020 pitched only in the Dominican Winter League. Today, though, he’s found a home again in the Reds organization, inking a minor league deal at age 33 to return to the club where he found the most success in his career to date.
The Reds announced the move on Twitter on Friday morning.
The #Reds have signed RHP Tim Adleman to a minor league contract and assigned him to the alternate training site. Adleman, 33, appeared in 43 games (33 starts) for the Reds between 2016 and 2017. pic.twitter.com/u0MgauhPMS— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) April 30, 2021
Never a fireballer, Adleman averaged just under 91 mph on his fastball back in 2017, and we all know how much velocity spikes have changed everything about the game since then. So, it will be interesting to see both what’s left in his right arm and what Kyle Boddy and the Driveline crew can unearth in him at this juncture.
Either way, it’s a depth signing to augment what the Reds have in place in their upper-minors at the moment, something that’s more valuable in 2021 than perhaps any other year as clubs emerge from the pandemic, the lack of a 2020 MiLB season altogether, and the expansion of the MLB season from 60 games back up to 162. That’s asking a lot of arms to fire a lot of pitches that simply were not fired a year ago, and spreading those across the most arms possible is, in theory, a good way to make sure everyone’s still available come season’s end.
Welcome back to Reds Country, Tim.