The Reds announced today that right-handed pitcher Vladimir Gutierrez has been placed on the 15-day injured list due to right forearm soreness, retroactive to June 4. Fellow righty Jared Solomon has been recalled in a corresponding move.
Gutierrez was a high-profile international signing with the Reds giving him a $4.75MM bonus in September 2016. He made his MLB debut last year and posted serviceable results, making 22 starts with a 4.74 ERA. However, the underlying numbers weren’t as exciting, as he posted a strikeout rate of 17.7%, walk rate of 9.3% and ground ball rate of 43.4%. Unfortunately, things got worse this year, as he currently has an ERA of 7.61 through 36 2/3 innings, with a 16.2% strikeout rate, 13.4% walk rate and 33.6% ground ball rate.
After eight starts, he was bumped from the rotation and made two relief appearances before today’s IL placement. Luis Castillo and Mike Minor both spent time on the IL to start the year but are healthy now, joining Tyler Mahle as the veterans in the rotation. With rookies Hunter Greene and Graham Ashcraft putting up better results than Gutierrez, it seems he’ll have to fight his way back into the mix once he’s healthy again.
The club hasn’t provided any timeline about his recovery process, though it’s always worrisome when a pitcher has an injury to their throwing arm. He’ll join Justin Dunn, Nick Lodolo and Connor Overton as starting candidates currently on the injured list. The Reds are 18-34, the worst record in the National League and better than just the Royals across the majors. With Minor, Castillo and Mahle all candidates to be moved at this year’s trade deadline, that could open up opportunities for whichever starters prove themselves worthy of a late-season audition.