The Billings Mustangs season begins tonight. And we saw their opening night roster, and it only had three 2019 draft picks on it. That’s a change from the past when the Mustangs roster was rather college player heavy. The Arizona League Reds and the Greeneville Reds both begin play next week (Monday for the AZL Reds and Tuesday for Greeneville). Their rosters have not yet been released.

Nick Lodolo, Rece Hinds, and Tyler Callihan – the Cincinnati Reds first, second, and third round picks are all signed. But right now they are not on a team. While it’s entirely possible that Lodolo, a polished college starting pitcher, could start his career with Dayton or Daytona, it’s unlikely that Hinds or Callihan do given that they are coming from the high school ranks.

With that said, it’s probably going to be some time before we see any of them assigned to a team. There’s reportedly a new rule in the organization this year. According to Gary Roller, the Billings Mustangs general manager, the Reds have a new rule this year that new signees must report to the facility in Goodyear for a week before being assigned to a team within the organization.

Assuming that rule holds true, we are still at least a week from seeing the likes of Rece Hinds and Tyler Callihan take the field somewhere, as both signed their professional contracts yesterday afternoon. For Nick Lodolo, a week from his signing date would be Tuesday.

It’s interesting to see the new rule about being in Goodyear at the development complex. The Reds have a new farm director this year in Shawn Pender. And they have a new field coordinator on the farm with Chris Tremie. There have been some technology implementations this year that have made their way into the organization. And now we are seeing this rule to get players in the organizations complex before being assigned elsewhere. Things are changing.

More Draft Pick Signings

As I was typing up this article the Cincinnati Reds announced more signings. Eric Yang, the team’s 7th round pick has officially signed, as has 11th rounder Wendell Marrero, and 25th rounder Yamil Nieves. The Reds now have signed their 1st through 11th round picks, and have officially signed 26 of the 40 players that they drafted. You can keep up with who has and hasn’t signed, as well as the slot pool money at The Cincinnati Reds Draft Tracker. Teams can sign non-seniors until July 5th. Seniors are eligible to sign beyond that date.

23 Responses

  1. The Duke

    Wow, we got 4 of the catcher signed, included Nieves who is not even 18 yet.

  2. Optimist

    Seems like they are speeding up and elaborating the process from draft to sign to place on MiLB roster. Particularly the quick signings of the top 10 draft picks. Greater staff efficiency, better planning, management driven? Also notable how the entire organization stumbled out of the gate in April, but with Dayton in particular, they’re all now headed to .500 or better baseball.

    Am I too optimistic or is the Titanic finally going to avoid the iceberg this year?

  3. DanD

    Doug, of the remaining 14 players who have not signed, which player left is the most important to get signed and would they be able to sign for more than 125K?

    • The Duke

      We don’t know if that money is still available if we don’t know what guys like Marrero and Nieves signed for. That extra money might be gone.

    • Doug Gray

      Until we know what Eric Yang signed for, I’ve got no idea how much money would be left, even if they got everyone beyond round 10 to sign for $125,000.

      • DanD

        let me say it this way, out of the remaining unsigned players who would you say is the most important draftee left to get signed?

      • The Duke

        Yan Contreras seems like the best pre-draft rated prospect left for the Reds who might conceivably sign still.

  4. RojoBenjy


    Your mention of technology–does that mean that one of the things they may be doing during that week in Goodyear is measuring baseline mechanics, kinetics, etc, in order to track changes as they develop?

    Seems like they should also be assessing them carefully to get the best fits with each team according to player and system needs.

    • Doug Gray

      I don’t know what they are doing with the “spend a week at the complex” thing.

      But they are using, and implementing more and more tech at the minor league level.

    • AirborneJayJay

      Yes. Exactly right. Everything gets baselined for the new pros from health, to strength and conditioning, to mechanics on hitting, throwing and pitching, to performance times and such.
      I would imagine that Caleb Cotham is filming each new pitcher with the new cameras and breaking down and documenting arm angles, grips on different pitches, spin rates, actions the ball takes on pitches, and so forth.
      Hitters are probably going through the same thing with bats speeds, stances, and now of course launch angle.

    • Tom

      That sounds really interesting. I hope so. I’d also be pleased to hear that the week was being used to define priorities and vision and culture for the Cincinnati Reds organization.

  5. James K

    Glad to hear about Marrero. He might be the surprise.

  6. MK

    The Siani example would support the idea of Callahan and Hinds going to Greeneville. Of course there is new leadership so it could change but that seems like the best course.

    Promotions usually happen on All Star week for the Dragons the last few years. In fact Friedl and Fairbanks missed out on the All Star game because they were promoted a couple days before. Heck, Ismael Guillon left after the All Star game for Bakersfield. So changes could be coming. Not sure who on Dayton might deserve promotion however.

  7. Mongo

    Mongo love technology. Mongo now have internet at home. Mongo no longer sit in McDonald’s parking lot with desktop computer.

    • Doug Gray

      Mongo still want hash brown for breakfast, right?

    • AirborneJayJay

      Mongo got jokes, too. I hope that pun was intend and not accidental, that was a good one. “no longer sit in the McDonald’s parking lot with desktop computer”. Desktop, good one. I couldn’t not laugh at that one.
      But doesn’t Mongo like Candy-grams? And Bart too?

    • RedsKoolAidDrinker

      Mongo on all-time greatest posters list for me. Wish Mongo post more often.

  8. SteveO

    Raby and Warren won’t sign until after CWS, so 28 at least is a pretty good number of signees.

    • SteveO

      Or should I say after their respective teams win the CWS or are eliminated.

  9. Charles Tankersley

    Doug, what do you think of Patrick Raybe. I saw he is the all-time winingest pitcher for Vanderbilt. He had a 2 something ERA. Of course he played 4 years so I guess that had something to do with his wins.