The Reds have been in need of an extra bullpen arm for a while this season, and whenever people have started talking about that need, the talk has turned to Aroldis Chapman. At first he was off limits because he was starting. And then, after being moved the bullpen he was seen as a non-option because he was, well, sucking.
But now may be the time to call Chapman up because he’s tearing it up down in Louisville lately: he’s posted a 0.82 ERA and held opponents to a .175 batting average over his last 11 innings, with a 17/6 K/BB ratio over that time.
I still think that Champman needs to be given every chance to be a starter. But I also never thought the Reds would be in a pennant race into August either, so maybe it may be better to punt those plans until next spring.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.