Devin Mesoraco hasn’t been able to catch since April 12 due to a left hip impingement and will eventually require surgery, but he hasn’t given up on a return this season.
C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer was told by Reds manager Bryan Price today that Mesoraco is now exploring the possibility of returning as a left fielder. He still needs surgery, but the team is confident he can it after the season and still be ready for the start of 2016. They don’t want to carry him strictly as a pinch-hitter, which is what they did for seven weeks prior to placing him on the disabled list late last month:
“He’s on board. He’s a huge part of it and I do believe that he’s seen a guy in New York as well that did a followup on his MRI results and test results,” Price said of Mesoraco. “So we’re trying to make sure all the bases are covered that if we’re going to do something like this, that we’re doing it with enough time to make sure he’s ready to go on Opening Day 2016 behind the plate.”
Mesoraco still has to get back to hitting before getting some work in the outfield. He’ll then need to get some minor league rehab games under his belt, so a return isn’t necessarily imminent. Still, it’s worth a shot to get his bat in the lineup, especially since Marlon Byrd is now sidelined with a fractured wrist.
From the official Twitter account of the Cincinnati Reds …
Byrd suffered a fractured right wrist on Tuesday night when he was struck by a pitch. He’s had previous fractures in that same area, and the Reds are still determining how much time he might miss. Brennan Boesch and Skip Schumaker will presumably share the playing time in left field for Cincinnati going forward.
Byrd got off to a sluggish start this season, but he was sporting a .953 OPS in 105 plate appearances since the beginning of May. The 37-year-old outfielder was acquired from the Phillies over the offseason for right-hander Ben Lively. Byrd is earning $8 million this season and carries an $8 million option for 2016.
Reds outfielder Marlon Byrd suffered a fractured right wrist when he was hit by a pitch Tuesday night. There’s no official word on how long he’ll be out, but it will be a while.
Byrd had an eight-homer May after hitting just .169 in April and the injury will likely make it impossible for him to reach the 550 plate appearances necessary to trigger next season’s $8 million vesting option. Byrd is being paid $8 million this season, $4 million of which the Phillies are covering as part of their trade agreement with the Reds.
Byrd is 37 years old and there wasn’t much trade interest in him until the Phillies offered to cover a big chunk of his salary, so losing out on the $8 million option for 2016 could cost him millions. In the long term the Reds would probably be relieved to be off the hook for that money, but in the short term it means giving more playing time for Brennan Boesch and Skip Schumaker.