Adleman, 31, spent last season with the KBO’s Samsung Lions, pitching to a 5.05 ERA with 137 K (54 BB) in 171 IP. Before heading to Korea, Adleman appeared in 43 games (33 starts) with Cincinnati from 2016-17, posting a career 4.97 ERA in 192 IP.
In his short big-league stint, the longtime minor-leaguer (who even spent part of the early decade in the Independent Leagues) didn’t really seem to belong – his middling fastball (90.5 career average MPH) was mostly allergic to missing bats, and his secondary stuff offered little in the way of relief. Adleman’s 1.97 career HR/9, no doubt inflated by the Pony League-esque confines of Great American Ballpark’s right field, plus his utter inability to keep the ball on the ground, ranked among the league’s highest during that span, and the Georgetown product again struggled with the gopher ball in his cross-pond foray.
Cincinnati’s rotation, which has added Tanner Roark, Alex Wood, and Sonny Gray in recent weeks, doesn’t figure to have a spot up for grabs, and the team’s depth pieces – Cody Reed, Sal Romano, Tyler Mahle, Brandon Finnegan, Robert Stephenson, Matt Wisler, and Lucas Sims among them – would all figure to rank above Adleman in the next-man-up queue. Still, it’s possible the 31-year-old could find his way into the Cincinnati bullpen as a long man, and the organizational familiarity certainly may work in his favor.