As the Cincinnati Reds prepared for 31 games in 31 days from Friday, they called left-handed Cionel Pérez and demoted José De León.
Pérez had excellent spring training but struggled with his command in his first stint in the major leagues of the season. He has allowed six hits and eight earned runs in 8 2/3 innings, run eight and hit eight. He was downgraded when the Reds had a taxed bullpen before their last road trip.
The 25-year-old pitcher was in their taxi squad during his last road trip with the Reds. He threw a goalless inning in the Triple-A Louisville on Tuesday, hit two, and walked one.
“When he was here, he showed what he is capable of,” said Reds manager David Bell of Pérez. “We just think he’s one of our best eight or nine helpers right now.”
De León, who has an 8.35 ERA in 18 1/3 innings, opened the season on rotation before Sonny Gray returned. In four of his last five reliefs, he has given up at least two runs. He may strike as well as anyone, but he has been inconsistent on multi-inning forays.
If he reports in Louisville, he’ll stay in the bullpen.
“He’s a major league talent,” said Bell. “He showed what he can do. The results of the last time, we just know that he is able to help us even more and that is the goal for him to get ready and come back so he can help us. “
As a left-handed player, Pérez offers some protection when Garrett serves a seven-game ban. Sean Doolittle is the only other leftist in the team’s bullpen.
“As for Amir’s situation, I have no idea how long this will take, so we didn’t base the decision on it,” said Bell. “But it was more like today, we had a feeling that Cionel could help us win games and that he was one of the best guys we could carry in the bullpen. But at some point we have to take care of it and take care of it. It’s just hard to know the timing. “
CASTELLANOS OUT: Nick Castellanos was scratched from the line-up on Wednesday with a tightness in the middle of his back. He left the game in the sixth inning on Tuesday with the injury, although score played a factor in that decision.
“It was a little tight,” Bell said Tuesday night. “If it had been a different game, a different result, I would have kept it. He would have stayed. We were just a little careful with the quick turnaround, the game at 12:30 (Wednesday).”
Nick Senzel, who was torn from the line-up on Tuesday with a sore left shoulder, was back in the line-up on Wednesday and hit the lead.
LONG-TERM MENTOR: David Bell had a few minutes before Tuesday’s game with Tony La Russa, White Sox manager. Bell played under La Russa for the St. Louis Cardinals from 1996 to 1998.
“I didn’t play a lot and probably didn’t handle it well, but I had plenty of time to study what he was doing,” said Bell. “I was watching him very closely. I was trying to study. I had a lot of time in the dugout. I would actually stare at him, just kind of watch and be in his head and find out what he was thinking.”
La Russa, inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014, is back in the undergrowth for the first time since winning the 2011 World Series.
When interviewing Bell for his first executive position with the Arizona Diamondbacks, La Russa was part of the team’s front office.
“I think when I look back on Tony and play for him, how he got his teams to compete and how he didn’t miss a thing, he has everything under control, those two qualities kind of impressed me,” said Bell said. “Even when I started managing, I often thought what Tony was doing right here.
“I would probably second to say to my father, I would think of Tony and try to figure out what he would do in this situation or how he would deal with this situation. Definitely influential. Just obviously an incredible amount of success and respect, den I have him. “
MOELLER MAN: Left-hander Phillip Diehl, who was scheduled for the mission on Sunday, will stay with the organization after approving the exemptions. Diehl went straight to Triple-A Louisville.
Diehl, a Moeller graduate, was in the Reds’ taxi squad on her last road trip, but was not called into the big league.
MARTY WEEKEND: The Reds announced that they have postponed their Reds Hall of Fame ceremonies to Friday, August 27. Marty Brennaman is the only candidate in this year’s class and will be the first broadcaster to be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame.
The event, which was positive, will include an alumni softball game that will be attended by many former players. Ticket information was not disclosed.
ALMOST HOME: Chicago Cubs backup catcher Tony Wolters attempted to steal home in a belated theft in Sunday’s game against the Reds. It had failed after a recheck, its lead foot was on its slide over the home plate, but Red’s catcher Tucker Barnhart kicked himself for Lackadaisical day.
“If I could have a say, I would probably have got them to call it safe because I kind of gave up on the piece,” said Barnhart. “I hadn’t seen this game in a while. It was like playing with the ball, but it almost worked.
“I thought it was an aggressive game but he kicked me out. I thought he was giving up on himself and he decoded me pretty well. It was almost one of the more embarrassing pieces of my career. I’m glad we got repetition.”