The Cincinnati Reds pitching health combined with its youth, needed pitcher, who was durable.
Cincinnati Reds signed Alfredo Simon to a one-year contract Major League contract on Thursday.
The Reds plan to put him directly into the starting rotation according to Reds’ general manager Dick Williams.
“We’re excited to have him back,” Williams said. “He is someone we can plug into the rotation while we continue to be very diligent about preparing our young pitchers to succeed in the future.”
Homer Bailey, who had elbow surgery, and John Lamb, who had back surgery, will not be ready to start the season. Michael Lorenzen was diagnosed with a sprained ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. Lorenzen was examined by Dr. Timothy Kremchek today. Lorenzen is prohibited from throwing until Dt. Kremchek examines him again in a couple weeks. The bullpen will be youthful as well.
Simon is a fit because of his durability.
“Our history with Alfredo made this an much easier decision. We know what we’re getting. He is extremely resilient. His durability is a huge bonus,” manager Bryan Price said. “We know he’s a great competitor. He gives us depth in the rotation. There are just too many question marks now with the readiness of some of our young guys that we don’t want to force to the big leagues too soon and there is the injury component.”
Simon has been throwing in the Dominican Republic at Bartolo Colon’s complex.
“I was here for three years and I know everybody here. I’m excited to be here,” said Simon, who turned down an offer from Toronto. “I am going to be ready as soon as I can. I’ve been throwing to hitters. Everybody knows me here. There are some new faces here but I will get to know them as soon as I can.”
The 34-year old right-hander spent three years with the Reds before he was traded to the Detroit Tigers for Eugenio Suarez. He was 13-12 with a 5.05 ERA in 31 starts.
“We’ve had our eye on the pitching market all spring and will continue to look at it if there is someone that can help us,” Williams said. “Before we got to camp we did want to supplement the ability of our rotation to throw innings and not put pressure on any pitcher to have to ask to do more than he is ready to do.”
With two weeks left the Reds are confident that Simon can be ready given his makeup.
“Simon sent us video of his last bullpen,” Price said. “He threw 50 pitches on the side. He will throw a couple bullpens most likely and get slotted into games to build him up for the first five starts. In the three years he was with us, he was the most durable arm on our staff.”
Simon worked out of the bullpen for two seasons in Cincinnati before moving to the starting rotation in 2014. He was 15-10 that season and was selected to the NL All-Star team.
Jon Moscot was scratched from his Wednesday night start with soreness in his right rib cage. He felt is swinging the bat in batting practice. “This isn’t a setback,” Price said. “We just want him to take a couple days to get the soreness out. He can toss right now.”
Michael Lorenzen will not be ready for the season. He was examined on Thursday morning by Dr. Timothy Kremchek. Lorenzen will be restricted from throwing until Dr. Kremchek can examine him in a couple weeks.