The Samsung Lions of the Korea Baseball Organization announced today that they’ve signed right-hander Tim Adleman to a one-year deal worth $1.05MM (via Jee-ho Yoo of South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency). The Reds haven’t announced the move, but Adleman was still on Cincinnati’s 40-man roster, so they’ll likely receive financial compensation from the Lions for releasing Adleman and paving the way for the move.
Adleman, who turned 30 earlier this month, has appeared in 43 games for the Reds over the past two seasons, totaling 192 innings of 4.97 ERA ball with 7.3 K/9, 3.3 BB/9, a 35.1 percent ground-ball rate and an average fastball velocity of 90.4 mph. He led an injury-plagued Reds pitching staff with 122 1/3 innings and finished second on the team with 20 starts made. However, Adleman was also among baseball’s most homer-prone pitchers in 2017, averaging a whopping 2.12 long balls per nine innings pitched.
Though he’s yet to experience much in the way of Major League success, Adleman does possess a solid minor league track record. He’s logged just 63 2/3 innings in Triple-A but recorded a sharp 2.40 ERA along the way, and overall he’s worked to a 3.57 ERA with 7.3 K/9, 2.3 BB/9 and 0.7 HR/9 in 458 2/3 innings across parts of six minor league seasons. Though he’s been a fly-ball pitcher in the Majors, he’s demonstrated the ability to induce grounders in the minors, routinely registering ground-ball rates of 45 percent or better.
For the Reds, losing Adleman will obviously deplete the team’s depth in the rotation. However, Cincinnati will surely be banking on better health from the trio of Anthony DeSclafani, Brandon Finnegan and Homer Bailey in 2017; DeSclafani missed the entire year with an elbow issue, while Finnegan was limited to just 13 innings and Bailey chipped in 91 frames. Beyond that, the Reds saw a number of young arms break into the Majors last season, and while many of them struggled, GM Dick Williams recently noted to Fangraphs’ David Laurila that the organization was heartened by strong finishes from the likes of Luis Castillo, Sal Romano and Tyler Mahle.
In addition to those six arms, the Reds also have lefties Amir Garrett and Cody Reed as options, as well as right-handers Robert Stephenson, Rookie Davis, Jackson Stephens, Keury Mella and Jose Lopez all on the 40-man roster, which now stands at 39 players.