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Finnegan voices displeasure over demotion

MLB.com @m_sheldon

DENVER -- Usually when a player is demoted to the Minor Leagues for his performance at the Major League level, he goes down, keeps quiet and goes about working his way back to the big leagues.

Starting pitcher Brandon Finnegan isn't hiding his frustration, however. Finnegan didn't like being dropped from the Reds rotation and sent to Triple-A Louisville on May 10 when Matt Harvey was acquired. He also implied that interim manager Jim Riggleman gave him quick hooks from starts.

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DENVER -- Usually when a player is demoted to the Minor Leagues for his performance at the Major League level, he goes down, keeps quiet and goes about working his way back to the big leagues.

Starting pitcher Brandon Finnegan isn't hiding his frustration, however. Finnegan didn't like being dropped from the Reds rotation and sent to Triple-A Louisville on May 10 when Matt Harvey was acquired. He also implied that interim manager Jim Riggleman gave him quick hooks from starts.

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"I felt like I had two pretty good starts up in Cincinnati," Finnegan told the Cincinnati Enquirer in a story published Saturday. "You can't do anything about getting taken out of the game after 70 pitches. Riggleman loves using the bullpen; that's his thing. That part was out of my hands. Besides that, two of my five starts I had, I thought were pretty good. I was attacking guys."

The numbers don't align with Finnegan's viewpoint. He was 0-3 with a 7.40 ERA in his five starts. In 20 2/3 innings, he gave up 20 runs (17 earned) with 27 hits, 15 walks, 14 strikeouts and five home runs. There also was diminished velocity -- 91 mph according to Statcast™.

Finnegan, 25, made 31 starts with 172 innings in 2016 but was limited to four starts in '17 because of injuries to both shoulders. He opened this season on the disabled list because of a left biceps strain and didn't debut until April 14. He was disappointed he didn't get more time to overcome his struggles.

"It pisses you off, honestly," Finnegan told the Enquirer. "It's like, 'All right, I'm going to show them.' Clearly, they don't have that confidence in me right now, so I'll prove to them that I'm fine. It just took a couple starts, that's all.

"That's how it was with Homer [Bailey], too. It's not bashing Homer at all. Homer was gone for 2 1/2, three years. It's going to take him awhile to get back at it. Everybody understands that with him. I was hoping I'd get kind of the same reaction, but that's fine. I'm not going to make excuses. I'm just going to come down here and do my work."

In two starts since going back to Louisville, Finnegan has given up six runs (four earned) and 10 hits over nine innings with three walks and 11 strikeouts.

Riggleman could tell the lefty didn't like hearing he was being sent down.

"He took the message. We knew he wasn't happy, of course. He didn't say much," Riggleman said on Saturday at Coors Field.

Riggleman declined to address Finnegan's comments.

"Well, you know what? I'm not going to say much about it. I'm biting my tongue," Riggleman said.

One more rehab start for DeSclafani

In his third rehab assignment start on Friday -- and his first for Louisville -- Anthony DeSclafani gave up six earned runs and eight hits over five innings with one walk, eight strikeouts and three home runs. He threw 93 pitches, with 70 strikes.

DeSclafani -- out since mid-March with a left oblique strain -- is eligible to be activated from the 60-day DL on Monday. But Riggleman expected him to get one more start in the Minors.

"There were some disappointing numbers there and there were some numbers that were encouraging," Riggleman said. "His previous one was very strong. This one, he got hit around a little bit. That certainly happens on those rehabs. You never know what's going to happen with those things."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Cincinnati Reds, Brandon Finnegan