Lefty Finnegan outrighted to Minor Leagues

Pitcher unlikely to return to Triple-A Louisville; Peraza to still see time at short

April 2nd, 2019

CINCINNATI -- Left-handed pitcher Brandon Finnegan cleared waivers and was sent outright by the Reds to the Minor Leagues on Tuesday.

It appears that Finnegan will not return to Triple-A Louisville, where he pitched most of last season.

"We're discussing options," Reds president of baseball operations Dick Williams said. "Right now, we don't think he'll go to Triple-A. It's possible he would go to Double-A, maybe in order to work out of a rotation and get more innings in a more conducive environment."

Finnegan was designated for assignment on Thursday, along with right-handed pitcher Matt Wisler. The Padres put in a claim and acquired Wisler in a trade for Minor League righty Diomar Lopez. No other club took a flier on Finnegan, however, so he remains in the organization but off Cincinnati’s 40-man roster.

When a player's contract is designated for assignment -- often abbreviated "DFA" -- that player is immediately removed from his club's 40-man roster, and 25-man roster if he was on that as well. Within seven days of the transaction (it was previously 10 days), the player must either be traded, released or placed on irrevocable outright waivers.

Acquired by Cincinnati with fellow lefties Cody Reed and John Lamb from the Royals in the 2015 Johnny Cueto trade, Finnegan was tied for the team lead with 31 starts in '16 while posting a 3.98 ERA.

In 2017, Finnegan was limited to four starts because of a strained lat and then a strained teres major muscle near his right shoulder. Last season, he was 0-3 with a 7.40 ERA in five starts before being demoted to Louisville, where he was 2-10 with a 7.05 ERA in 28 games, including nine starts.

"We'll also talk with him and our pitching coaches about different ways to address the problems he is having," Williams said.

Peraza to still get starts at shortstop

Since second baseman Scooter Gennett's right groin injury late in Spring Training, José Peraza moved over from shortstop to fill in. José Iglesias moved from a bench role to be the starting shortstop. Gennett is expected to be out two to three months.

Peraza hasn't been a stranger with his old position, however, and moved over to shortstop as part of double switches Sunday and Monday. On Tuesday, Peraza got a start at shortstop while Derek Dietrich came off the bench for a start at second base vs. the Brewers. Peraza went 0-for-4, and Dietrich went 0-for-2 in Cincinnati's 4-3 loss. Reds manager David Bell plans to find more opportunities for Peraza to get starts at shortstop.

"We definitely want that to happen. He was making such great progress," Bell said. "If we ever get to the point where we need to move him back there for a longer period of time, we think he can make that adjustment pretty quick. We won't do it just to do it, but there will be games like tonight where it will happen. I think there's multiple benefits to making that happen and getting him some playing time over there. It will be nice just in case we ever need to do that."

Bell reacts to Greene news

Reflecting the feeling of the organization, Bell felt bad for Reds top pitching prospect Hunter Greene after new broke Monday that the right-handed pitching phenom needs to have Tommy John surgery to repair the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. Greene will not pitch until sometime in 2020.

Bell met Greene and his family during Spring Training and was impressed with the 19-year-old, who is ranked as the Reds’ No. 3 prospect and No. 36 overall in MLB, per MLB Pipeline.

"The good news is he's so young and he's talented," Bell said. "The advances that have been made with that surgery, a lot of times guys are coming back stronger and healthier. By all indications, he's going to bounce back. He's going to be fine and he's going to have a long career ahead of him, but that doesn’t make it any easier for him to have to go through this. We just wish him a speedy recovery. Hopefully, he can get right back on track as soon as possible."