The Cincinnati Reds designated right-hander Derek Law for assignment back on November 15th of last year, doing so as part of a series of procedural moves that put some of their top young prospects on the 40-man roster to protect them from the pending Rule 5 Draft.
As it turns out, the Reds still think Law might have something left in the tank. Today, they reunited with the veteran pitcher on a minor league deal that includes an invite to spring training in Goodyear.
Law, 32, appeared in 15 games for the Reds during the 2022 season after joining them mid-August, in which time he allowed earned runs to score in 4 of those. In all, he pitched to a 4.08 ERA and 4.24 FIP in that rather tiny 17.2 IP sample, doing so with a newly implemented cutter that he’d not thrown in a season prior to 2022. He also reduced his fastball rate down to a career-low 21.2% last year, in the process seeing its average velocity spike to a career-best 95.2 mph while leaning more on a cutter-heavy five-pitch mix.
In other words, despite having 193 big league games under his belt dating back to the 2016 season, there’s plenty about Law that was ‘new’ during the 2022 season, and surely the Reds are hoping that he’s reformed himself in a way that could pay dividends for them in 2023.
With few other arms having been brought in by the Reds all winter, Law will certainly have the chance to pitch his way back onto the big league roster as early as Opening Day, assuming all goes well for him in Goodyear.