JANUARY 4, 2020: Thornburg would earn $1.25MM in the majors, with up to $750K in incentives if he reaches 65 appearances, Nightengale adds on Twitter.
DECEMBER 31, 2019: The Reds have agreed to a deal with righty Tyler Thornburg, according to Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer (via Twitter). It’s a minors pact with an invitation to participate in MLB camp.
Thornburg, 31, is looking for a fresh start after finally wrapping up an injury-plagued tenure with the Red Sox in 2019. He ended up throwing just 42 2/3 innings of 6.54 ERA ball in Boston after arriving via trade in advance of the 2017 season.
Last year’s hoped-for rebound never came to pass, leading the Sox to cut Thornburg loose in the middle of the season. He landed with the Dodgers on a minors deal but didn’t make it back to the bigs as his struggles continued at Triple-A.
Despite the obvious issues in recent years, Thornburg has in the past been quite a good reliever. Some physical tools are there, as he still carries a mid-nineties heater and generates excellent spin rate on his pitches, though he managed just an 8.6% swinging-strike in the majors in 2019.