Cincinnati Reds: Full Scouting Report on Each September Call-Up
Reds manager Bryan Price is going to have a lot of new talent at his disposal for the remainder of the month. The September call-ups have arrived, and while the Reds probably won't be playing much meaningful baseball in September, their call-ups will have a chance to cement their place in the future of the organization.
There weren't many surprises. Unfortunately, guys like Rey Navarro and Felix Perez were not on the 40-man roster, so they will not be making an appearance this year despite solid performances at the Triple-A level for both.
Regardless, there is still plenty of opportunity for the 10 call-ups to either establish or repair their MLB reputations.
Donald Lutz, 1B/OF
Donald Lutz had a brief stint in the majors earlier this year when he was called up to put in some time at the vacant first base and in left field. While he didn't get the opportunity, at least enough of it, to demonstrate his raw power, know that according to BaseballAmerica.com, Lutz was rated the Reds' best power hitter in the farm after the 2012 season.
As a member of the Reds this season, Lutz played in 18 games and slashed .212/.278/.333. He managed seven hits in 33 at-bats, including four doubles. He struck out 11 times compared to just three walks.
Lutz's presence is significant because he'll probably be a candidate for what will undoubtedly be a vacant left field next season. But his Triple-A numbers aren't doing much for reassurance. He slashed .236/.307/.395 in 52 games in Louisville this season.
It's worth noting he started the year in Double-A, where he slashed .360/.412/.685.
Yorman Rodriguez, OF
In what is arguably the most intriguing call-up, Yorman Rodriguez will get a chance to showcase his talent on the major league level following his September promotion.
Rodriguez has had an interesting time ascending the ranks of the Reds farm. He ended the 2008 season as the No. 5 prospect in the organization, only to fall as deep as the No. 19 prospect after 2011. He's since rebounded, earning the organization's No. 5 prospect ranking by BaseballAmerica.com following the 2013 season.
In 119 games played in Double-A this season, Rodriguez is slashing .262/.331/.389. He has 118 hits in 119 games, including nine home runs, five triples and 20 doubles. He also has 12 stolen bases.
Rodriguez will certainly be another candidate for the left field role. After 2012, he was rated the organization's best outfield arm.
Jake Elmore, IF/OF
Elmore has had two brief stints in the majors. In 2012, Elmore slashed .191/.247/.250 in only 30 games with the Arizona Diamondbacks. In 2013, he slashed .242/.313/.325 for the Houston Astros.
He turned in a prolific year at the Triple-A level. In Sacramento, he slashed .282/.374/.365, and in Louisville, he slashed .279/.290/.298.
In fact, his career minor league slash line lends even more confidence. In seven seasons, Elmore is slashing .290/.385/.388.
As a middle infielder, he might be a considerable replacement for the offensively challenged Zack Cozart. In direct contrast with the current starting shortstop, Elmore was rated as having the best strike zone discipline in the Pacific Coast League in 2012.
His .964 career minor league fielding percentage at shortstop may be a detriment to his chances at starting over arguably the best defensive shortstop in the sport.
Daniel Corcino, RHP
Fans were treated to the potential of Daniel Corcino back in August when Corcino got to pitch in a relief capacity against the Chicago Cubs. Corcino fanned two Cubs in one inning of work. It took him just ten pitches to get through the inning.
As great as his one game in the majors was, his one game in Triple-A was the opposite. He pitched five innings and allowed four runs, including three home runs and four walks.
The Reds have high hopes for Corcino. In 2012, he was listed as one of baseball's Top 100 Prospects by BaseballAmerica.com. His maturation is crucial to the Reds' ability to replace one of four starting pitchers who will be approaching the end of their contracts after the 2015 season.
In seven minor league seasons, Corcino is 45-52 with an ERA of 4.14. In 693.2 innings pitched, he's recorded 609 strikeouts and 308 walks.
David Holmberg, LHP
Reds fans have already gotten a couple samples of David Holmberg, both of which left a sour taste in everyone's mouth. Back in July, he surrendered five earned runs to the Cubs in just 2.2 innings pitched. Then against the Braves, he allowed six earned runs in 2.2 innings pitched before getting removed and eventually taking the loss.
Holmberg had also recorded one professional start with the Diamondbacks as well: 3.2 innings pitched, three earned runs. That was last season.
The reason he's still on a roster is because while his professional experience hasn't been pretty, he's had a decent run in the minor leagues. In six minor league seasons, he's 34-38 with a 3.57 ERA.
He was a former second-round draft pick of the Chicago White Sox back in 2009, so there's clearly potential there. He's just had problems manifesting it on the major league level, which can probably be said for the majority of minor league players.
Jason Bourgeois, OF
The Reds have to be excited about Jason Bourgeois. Despite getting very little hype in the media or on blogs in search of capable minor league talent, Jason Bourgeois continues to be a hidden gem in the ranks.
He's no stranger to the major leagues. He was drafted in the second round by the Texas Rangers in 2000. He's made six different appearances in the bigs, starting in 2008 with the White Sox and as recently as 2013 with the Tampa Bay Rays.
While every stint he had was brief, his lengthiest season came in 2011 with the Astros. In that season, Bourgeois slashed a mean .294/.323/.357.
In 15 minor league seasons overall, Bourgeois' slash line is .282/.341/.385.
In just 231 games of major league experience, he's slashing .259/.305/.326. He can play every position in the outfield and even has some experience at second base. He's versatile and has proven he can hit when given the opportunity.
Ryan Dennick, LHP
Ryan Dennick was a 22nd-round draft pick of the Kansas City Royals in 2009. He's a left-handed relief pitcher who has been in the bullpen for his entire career.
In six minor league seasons, Dennick is 27-31 with an ERA of 3.87. In 419 innings pitched, the lefty has allowed 406 hits and 203 runs. When you consider that he's in a bullpen capacity, those numbers can't draw much confidence from the organization.
But this season has been a lot better for Dennick. In 57 games in Triple-A, Dennick pitched 49.2 innings of work and is 4-0 with an ERA of 2.36. With a ground-ball/fly-ball ratio of 2.83, Dennick is inducing more ground balls than he ever has.
Carlos Contreras, RHP
Carlos Contreras found himself in a crowded, underutilized bullpen when he first made it to the majors this season. At no fault of anyone, really, the starting pitching was making it tough for the bullpen to get time at that juncture in the season.
First, what we've already seen: 13 games pitched this season for the Reds with a 6.11 ERA to show for it.
In 17.2 innings of work, Contreras surrendered 12 earned runs on 17 hits, including 11 walks. He did record 18 strikeouts in those 17.2 innings, so there were real flashes of his potential.
According to BaseballAmerica.com, Contreras is the Reds' No. 7 prospect in the organization. In seven minor league seasons, Contreras is 19-20 with a 4.46 ERA. He boasts a troubling 4.70 BB/9 ratio, which demonstrates more control problems, but he does have 355 strikeouts in 375.2 innings of service.
Tucker Barnhart, C
Another call-up Reds fans will have already sampled is catcher Tucker Barnhart. He was a 10th-round draft pick in 2009. He was called up for a brief stint of service earlier in the year.
It was forgettable for the most part. Barnhart only played in 13 games. In that very short amount of time, he slashed .139/.318/.315. His cumulative minor league performance is much better. In six minor league seasons, Barnhart is slashing .259/.341/.354.
It's worth noting he was also named the best defensive catcher in the organization after the 2012 season.
Most encouraging about Barnhart is his BB/SO numbers. Unlike the majority of his Reds teammates, Barnhart walks a lot compared to how often he strikes out. In those six seasons of minor league work, Barnhart has 174 walks compared to just 251 strikeouts.
Per ESPN.com, the Reds boast the second-worst team OBP in the sport, so there's plenty room for guys capable of reaching base.
J.J. Hoover, RHP
There's no mystery surrounding this September call-up. In 2014, it has been nothing short of agony in Hooverville. J.J. Hoover left the Reds with a 1-10 record and a 5.27 ERA. According to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com, Hoover made history when he earned his 10th consecutive loss.
It was a Reds' club record for consecutive losses.
It's worth noting that Hoover was cast into an unfamiliar role at the beginning of the year, at least at this level. Because Aroldis Chapman and Jonathan Broxton were injured, Hoover had to assume the responsibilities of those guys, which did not translate well.
In fairness, it didn't translate well for anyone, including Logan Ondrusek or Manny Parra.
But Hoover's problems followed him up until the point he was sent back down to Triple-A. This horrible year comes right after a solid 2013 campaign in which Hoover finished 5-5 with a 2.86 ERA. One would think this is the guy Bryan Price was relying on while continually sending him out to the mound in dire situations.
While in Louisville, Hoover pitched just four games. In five innings of work, he struck out seven and allowed no earned runs. His WHIP was just 1.00.
All player stats and organization rankings are from BaseballAmerica.com unless otherwise noted. All stats are current up to September 2, 2014.
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