The Reds announced today that they have activated righty Anthony DeSclafani from the 60-day disabled list. Clearing the way for his long-awaited return, the organization optioned righty Jackson Stephens and released right-hander Kevin Shackelford.
DeSclafani’s return to action tonight represents the culmination of a lengthy rehab effort. The 28-year-old had been a noted success story for the Reds after coming over in the pre-2015 Mat Latos swap, working to a 3.74 ERA in 308 frames over his first two seasons in Cincinnati.
Successive injuries, however, put DeSclafani on the shelf. He was working back from a long absence owing to a sprained ulnar collateral ligament when he suffered an oblique strain.
In between those injuries, DeSclafani agreed to avoid arbitration with the Reds for $860K. That rate of pay obviously reflects the right-hander’s absence, but does also increase his potential value if he can get back to something approaching his prior form.
Thus far in 2018, DeSclafani has thrown 19 1/3 innings in the high minors on a rehab assignment. Though he has surrendered ten earned runs on five long balls, he’s also maintaining a healthy 22:3 K/BB ratio.
As for Shackelford, he sported an impressive 16.1% swinging-strike rate and 58.0% groundball rate in 30 2/3 MLB innings last year, though he also allowed a few too many long balls and a 4.70 ERA. But he struggled in limited action this and is now headed for elbow surgery, per C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer (via Twitter).