Homer Bailey ready for another shot in Cincinnati?

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Homer Bailey has yet to experience any success in the majors, posting a
7.01 ERA over 18 starts in various stints with the Reds during the past
three seasons, and his stock and raw stuff have both declined since he
was considered one of the elite pitching prospects in baseball just a
couple years ago.

Bailey simply hasn’t been able to throw strikes to big-league
hitters, handing out 51 walks in 86 innings, and allowed six runs on
three hits and six walks over 4.1 innings in his lone start with the
Reds this season. However, since being sent back to Triple-A following
that ugly outing against the Indians on May 23 he’s been fantastic.

Upon returning to Louisville he added a split-fingered fastball
to his repertoire while going 5-0 with a 0.81 ERA and 40/10 K/BB ratio
in 44.1 innings spread over six starts. Of course, this is Bailey’s
third go-around at Triple-A and he has a 3.66 ERA with 237 strikeouts
in 268 career innings there, so his success of late certainly doesn’t
mean that he won’t implode again in the majors.

With that said, the Reds are in need of a starter for Saturday’s game
and Bailey seems like the obvious pick to face the same Indians lineup
that he struggled against last month. He no longer looks like a
potential ace, but Bailey is still just 23 years old and with 45 starts
at Triple-A under his belt it may be time to simply let him sink or
swim in the big leagues.

Mike Fiers may not be ready for start of regular season due to back issue

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Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that Tigers starter Mike Fiers is dealing with a back issue and may not be ready for the start of the season. Manager Ron Gardenhire characterized the injury as a “stiff back” and added, “Maybe a little bit of a bulging disk or something like that.”

Fiers, 32, signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Tigers in December. He has had a forgettable spring, yielding 12 runs on 10 hits and eight walks with seven strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings.

Fiers had a rotation spot locked up along with Michael Fulmer, Jordan Zimmermann, and Francisco Liriano. Matt Boyd and Daniel Norris were battling it out for the No. 5 spot. If Fiers opens the regular season on the 10-day disabled list, both could have spots in the rotation.