The Cincinnati Reds have signed right-handed pitcher Odrisamer Despaigne to a minor league contract. If he makes the big leagues his deal will be worth $850,000.

Odrisamer Despaigne has pitched in the Major Leagues each year since arriving in the United States from Cuba in 2014. He’s pitched for the Padres, Orioles, Marlins, and Angels. He’s spent time pitching out of the rotation as well as the bullpen in his career. The 31-year-old has struggled more frequently than he’s found success. His ERA’s over the years are 3.36, 5.80, 5.93, 40.1, and 6.69 coming last year.

In 2018, as noted, Odrisamer Despaigne struggled in the Majors. He did pitch a little bit better in Triple-A with the Marlins. His ERA was 4.36, where his walk rate was nearly half of what it was in the majors. He was, however, just as hittable – his BABIP was .375 in the majors and .380 in the minors. In 2018 he posted, by far, his best strikeout rates of his life – in both the majors and minors. More strikeouts is certainly better, but the walk rate also was very high by comparison to his career.

For his career, Odrisamer Despaigne has always struggled with stranding baserunners. His strand rate for his career is just 64.6%. In 2018 the league average rate was 72.8%. He’s also pitched much better in his career as a starter (4.64 ERA) than as a reliever (5.80 ERA).

This move sounds a lot more like lining up Triple-A depth than a move made for the Major League squad. There’s not a ton to look at on the resume and think this move does anything for the big league team in 2019. But Triple-A still needs guys to throw innings, and if the Reds plan to possibly use a starter or two that doesn’t make the rotation in the bullpen, they may need an arm in Louisville to start every five days and be solid. That could be what Odrisamer Despaigne can do.

2 Responses

  1. Pat

    Rookie Davis and Adam Liberatore throwing for teams Jan 31 in Raleigh, NC with several interested teams sources tell The Athletic

  2. Shamrock

    I’ll compare this to the TJ Freidl signing: i seriously doubt any of the other teams even had a clue that this guy was available..