The Reds have been endlessly cycling pitchers through their roster over the past week or so due to this COVID outbreak. Cruz was one of four pitchers to land on the IL due to the virus, alongside Hunter Greene, Ben Lively and Brandon Williamson. Those absences forced the club to make transactions on an almost daily basis to keep the staff stocked with available arms.
Herget, 32, was one of those fresh arms, getting selected to the roster earlier this week. He entered Wednesday’s game with the club down 8-3 to the Mariners and tossed 2 1/3 scoreless frames to finish the contest. But with Cruz now back from the IL, he’s been bumped from the roster. Players on the COVID IL don’t count against the 40-man roster, so the return of Cruz meant that Herget had to be removed from there instead of merely being optioned.
The right-handed Herget signed a minor league deal with the club in the offseason and has now been selected and then designated for assignment twice this year. He was also on the 40-man roster from early April to the middle of June, getting frequently optioned to Triple-A and back in that time. On the whole, he has thrown 24 1/3 innings in the bigs this year with a 5.18 ERA, 12.4% strikeout rate, 5.7% walk rate and 33.3% ground ball rate.
With the trade deadline long passed, the Reds will have to put Herget on waivers in the coming days. Back in June, he passed through unclaimed and could have elected free agency but decided to stick with the Reds. It’s possible the same sequence of events plays out now, though that remains to be seen.