The Reds have signed catcher Ryan Lavarnway to a one-year, Major League contract, as per a team announcement (Twitter link). Lavarnway’s signing was one of a flurry of moves from Cincinnati, as the club also designated right-hander Jesus Reyes for assignment and placed righty David Hernandez and catchers Curt Casali and Kyle Farmer on the injured list. Taking their places on the roster are Lavarnway, and Triple-A callups Lucas Sims and Josh VanMeter.
Farmer is headed to the seven-day version of the IL due to a concussion, while Casali is on the 10-day IL (retroactive to Tuesday) due to a right knee sprain. With starting catcher Tucker Barnhart also injured, the Reds were left in sudden need for help behind the plate, opening the door for Lavarnway to land a guaranteed deal almost immediately after he was released from his minors contract with the Yankees.
Lavarnway has recorded some big league playing time in each of the last two seasons, appearing in six games each with the A’s in 2017 and Pirates in 2018. Best known as a former top prospect in the Red Sox system, the 31-year-old Lavarnway has a .208/.268/.326 slash line over 426 career plate appearances in the majors. He’ll join Juan Graterol as the Reds’ makeshift catching duo until some reinforcements come off the injured list.
Reyes made his MLB debut in 2018, posting a 3.18 ERA over 5 2/3 relief innings. Signed as an undrafted free agent in 2014, the 26-year-old has a 3.65 ERA, 7.2 K/9, and 1.88 K/BB rate over 406 2/3 career innings in the minors, though Reyes has struggled badly at Triple-A this season.
Wow. Lavarnway that was fast. Awesome a Major league deal!
I’m wondering if this wasn’t a coincidence, as in maybe he had a clause in his minor-league deal that he would be released if another team approached him with a big-league opportunity.
Is that even allowed?
Well that worked out rather well for Lavarnway… good for him.
Because the Blue Jays didn’t call to offer Luke Maile.
Because they had 2 catchers who needed to go in the injured list at the same time, and the 2 catchers they had at AAA were Juan Graterol, who they recalled yesterday and who can’t hit, and Stuart Turner, who is hitting .163 in AAA and therefore hits even worse than Graterol. They needed a catcher on very short notice who preferably had some big league experience… hence Lavarnway.
Johnny Bench must not have been available
Farmer took a couple fouls to the face in quick succession against the Cubs the other day. He looked out of it after the second one. I cringed as he stayed in the game. Glad to see them giving him time off.
Lucas sims and Alex wood should replace Disco and Maile in the rotation.
Disco has been pretty solid. I wouldn’t replace him. But agree that Mahle should be replaced
Looks like the Reds are sellers now.
I wonder if Lavarnway is a future front office guy. He’s pretty smart.
Ivy league (Yale), but was drafted as a Jr. Had some Ivy league records I believe as a player when left.
Arm was decent when he left the sox organization, was kind of slow behind the plate and never was the best at blocking balls in the dirt, then neither is current Sox starter Christian Vazquez great with balls in the dirt, yet his other defensive assets are above good.
Lavarnway’s calling card was always the bat.. Was strange how when he went to catching more games in the minors the power went
Yet to be determined, they are definitely between a “rock and a hard place “
Unfortunately the Reds also have the worst ownership and front office in MLB so you can count on stupid things happening
Worse than the Orioles? Worse than the Mets? I think everyone thinks their teams’ “front office and ownership” is the WORST. I’ve heard the same thing said about the Mariners and Marlins too. If a team’s winning, suddenly they’re all geniuses.
Um.. they had to have a catcher and got one better than Stuart Turner, who was the next man up. Lavarnway and Graterol will both get the DFA after Barnhart/Casali are back.
This is one of those cases where luck/timing is more important than talent.
Mendoza Line 215
I was going to post about the Pirates should rescoop Lavarnaway up but the Reds beat them..
The Pirates really have no backup now to Diaz and Stallings.It would have been perfect to put him back at Indianapolis as the emergency third catcher.
Always an important thing to have catching depth but NH did not learn that from three years ago.
Just sort of a sad state that the Pirates are in right now.
Now it really looks like they are sellers. Can’t hit
Mendoza Line 215
The PIrates should have given the Reds Francisco Cervelli if he actually wants to continue catching.