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Feldman opts for season-ending knee surgery

MLB.com @m_sheldon

CINCINNATI -- The right knee soreness experienced by Reds starter Scott Feldman became problematic enough that his 2017 season could no longer be salvaged. On Tuesday, Feldman had season-ending arthroscopic surgery to clean out the damaged cartilage in the knee.

Signed to a one-year, $2.3 million contract as a free agent in January to bolster a young rotation, Feldman went 7-7 with a 4.21 ERA in 21 starts over 111 1/3 innings with one shutout. Although he will be a free agent again this offseason, manager Bryan Price wouldn't mind having Feldman back in 2018.

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CINCINNATI -- The right knee soreness experienced by Reds starter Scott Feldman became problematic enough that his 2017 season could no longer be salvaged. On Tuesday, Feldman had season-ending arthroscopic surgery to clean out the damaged cartilage in the knee.

Signed to a one-year, $2.3 million contract as a free agent in January to bolster a young rotation, Feldman went 7-7 with a 4.21 ERA in 21 starts over 111 1/3 innings with one shutout. Although he will be a free agent again this offseason, manager Bryan Price wouldn't mind having Feldman back in 2018.

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"I love that he's a tremendous competitor," Price said. "He stayed on the field probably longer than he should have because he wanted to compete for this ballclub. He's good with the young guys. He sets a good precedent as far as how hard he works and the type of professionalism. The results were good when he was healthy enough to be on the field. I'm pulling for him to have a full recovery and be an option for us moving forward."

Feldman, 34, was on the disabled list from July 18-Aug. 12 with right knee inflammation. He was activated as the club knew his knee wasn't 100 percent, but it was serviceable enough to pitch. But during his last start on Thursday vs. the Cubs at Wrigley Field, Feldman blew a nine-run lead with five home runs allowed over 3 2/3 innings, and struggled to field his position. The Reds put him back on the DL on Friday.

"He certainly wasn't capable of pitching again. He wasn't going to be healthy enough to pitch this year," Price said. "We needed to remedy the problem."

Asher Wojciechowski will take Feldman's rotation spot on Wednesday vs. the Cubs. Price could not say whether Wojciechowski would get the remaining starts from that spot.

"I think we'll get to September and take a look," Price said.

The Reds have a few factors that make their rotation fluid and rookie Luis Castillo approaching an innings limit is one of them. Between Double-A and the Majors, Castillo has logged 150 2/3 innings, more than the 131 2/3 innings he had last year in the Minors. Price would like him to get 30-35 innings beyond his 2016 total.

"It didn't look the math was going to allow him to pitch all the way through September," Price said.

The organization also has several prospect pitchers it might want to see again -- such as Amir Garrett, Rookie Davis, Jackson Stephens and Cody Reed. September callups have yet to be defined, however.

"The biggest challenge is having guys that are coming up that are throwing the ball well and throwing the ball consistently in Triple-A," Price said. "I'd really like to see the guys that are performing and performing well."

DeSclafani update
Right-hander Anthony DeSclafani, who suffered a setback in his comeback from a UCL strain in his right elbow on Aug. 3 by coming down with tendinitis, resumed a throwing program last week. There has been no pain, according to the reports, but it's unclear if DeSclafani will have an opportunity to pitch for the Reds before the season ends.

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, Scott Feldman