Feb. 15: The Reds announced today that they have voided Manship’s contract. Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Manship did not pass his physical earlier this week (Twitter link).
Feb. 6: The Reds and free-agent righty Jeff Manship are in agreement on a minor league contract, reports SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo (via Twitter). He’ll be in camp as a non-roster invitee and compete for a roster spot.
Manship, 33, spent the 2017 season in the Korea Baseball Organization, where he posted a 3.67 ERA with 6.9 K/9 against 2.6 BB/9 in 112 2/3 innings for the NC Dinos. Manship worked as a starter in the KBO, taking the mound on 21 occasions, but his most recent MLB work (and the only real MLB success he’s ever experienced) has come out of the bullpen.
Through his first six MLB campaigns, Manship totaled a 6.46 ERA through 139 1/3 innings with the Twins, Rockies and Phillies. However, his career looked to hit a turning point in 2016 when he landed with the Indians and pitched to a scintillating 0.92 ERA in 39 1/3 innings out of the bullpen. He followed that up with a 3.12 mark through 43 1/3 innings the following season, though after a downturn in control that season (4.6 BB/9), metrics like xFIP (4.81) and SIERA (4.53) weren’t nearly as optimistic. Cleveland non-tendered him that December.
In all likelihood, Manship will vie for a spot in the Cincinnati bullpen. The team’s rotation already consists of Anthony DeSclafani, Luis Castillo, Homer Bailey and Brandon Finnegan, and the Reds have plenty of candidates for the fifth and final spot. Tyler Mahle, Sal Romano, Cody Reed, Amir Garrett and Robert Stephenson are among the candidates to round out the starting five. The bullpen offers more opportunity, though the signings of veteran righties David Hernandez and Jared Hughes have already filled two potential vacancies.