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Cincinnati Reds sign OF Conner Capel, bring back RHP Brett Kennedy on minor league deal

It’s depth season around these parts!

Chicago White Sox v Oakland Athletics Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images

Conner Capel was once a 5th round draft pick by the Cleveland Guardians back in 2018, and he’s since been traded to the St. Louis Cardinals and plucked off waivers by the Oakland A’s. He was granted free agency after the end of the 2023 season by Oakland, rendering him a free agent for this particular offseason.

He is a free agent no more. The Cincinnati Reds signed him this week to a minor league deal with an invite to spring training, as they announced on Twitter.

Capel is the owner of a solid .280/.366/.408 line in 145 PA at the big league level across the last two seasons, with a similar career line at the AAA level of .264/.353/.435 in 1238 PA. He swings from the left side of the plate, and the 26 year old has experience playing all across the outfield.

I believe you can file this signing away in the ‘Mark Payton is the Scott Heineman of Brian O’Gradys’ for the time being.

Cincinnati also re-upped with righty Brett Kennedy last week, per their MLB.com transactions ledger. You may remember Brett from such films as The Boatjacking of Supership 79 and that one start last August where he held the Toronto Blue Jays scoreless over 5.0 IP in GABP when the Reds were still in the playoff hunt. Brett is still just 29 years old and a perfectly serviceable depth arm that, in theory, we all hope won’t have to pitch too many innings at all for Cincinnati in 2024, but it’s nice to know he’s one of the first arms up in the event of a rotation implosion.