The Reds have inked free agent right-hander Yovani Gallardo to a one-year major league contract, according to Robert Murray of FanRag Sports. Chris Cotillo of SB Nation confirms, tweeting that he’ll earn a guaranteed $750K, and his contract includes incentives that could boost the total value of the deal to $1MM. The club has optioned right-hander Zack Weiss to Triple-A in a corresponding move, and designated catcher Stuart Turner for assignment in order to make room on the 40-man roster.
It’s a quick turnaround for the 32-year-old Gallardo, who earlier this offseason settled for a partially-guaranteed contract with a Brewers organization that drafted and developed him. Soon after being informed that he wouldn’t make the team, Gallardo was released by Milwaukee.
After just five days back on the open market, the righty has found a new home with a rebuilding Reds organization that finds itself wondering when Anthony DeSclafani and Brandon Finnegan might return to the rotation. The signing figures to push left-hander Cody Reed to the bullpen, leaving the club with a starting cast of Homer Bailey, Luis Castillo, Sal Romano, Tyler Mahle and Gallardo.
While Gallardo’s 5.57 ERA, 6.48 K/9 and 4.38 BB/9 across the past two seasons with the Orioles and Mariners represent rather uninspiring marks, the righty had long been an effective rotation piece for the Brewers and Rangers. Prior to 2016, his ERA had only exceeded 4.00 once in a full season, and according to Fangraphs his full-season WAR never dipped below 2.0 from 2009-2015. If he can regain some semblance of his former ground ball-inducing and hard contact-limiting ability, he could yet prove a steady presence in the Reds’ rotation.