Desmond Jennings had been with Tampa Bay long enough to have played when they were still the Devil Rays, but his 11-year tenure with the team came to end in 2016 after the veteran outfielder was released in the midst of an unproductive, injury-riddled season. In 65 games with the Rays, Jennings slashed a paltry .200/.281/.350 and struck out a career-high 25.8 percent of the time. His 73 wRC+ was easily the worst of his MLB career. A former 30-plus base stealer in his prime, the 30-year-old has just seven stolen bases in his last two big league seasons (333 plate appearances). Jennings signed with the Reds on a minor league deal prior to the 2017 season, but he's unlikely to be of much fantasy interest. It seems that his once-tantalizing upside has all but vanished and he'll likely serve as no more than a reserve outfielder in the coming years.
Jennings agreed to a minor-league contract with the Mets on Wednesday, James Wagner of The New York Times reports. Jennings was released by the Reds at the end of March after failing to crack the major-league roster out of camp, but he didn't have to wait very long for another offer to arise. The 30-year-old will report to Triple-A Las Vegas, but his extensive major-league experience could help him punch a ticket to the big leagues if anyone in New York's outfield gets hurt.
Jennings was released by the Reds on Friday, Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Jennings showed some power this spring for the Reds, but a .195 batting average ultimately sealed his fate. He has been on a steady decline for the past four years, with his big-league OPS dropping from .748 in 2013 to .631 in 2016. That wasn't enough to unseat any of Cincinnati's outfielders, as they have instead chosen to go with youth in former Cubs prospect Arismendy Alcantara. Jennings has played just 83 major-league games over the past two seasons, and he's going to have a hard time adding to that total after this stinker of a spring.
Jennings was reassigned to minor-league camp Tuesday. Jennings was battling for a reserve outfield spot, and it looked like the 30-year-old had a good shot at making the big-league roster with the release of Ryan Raburn. He was just 8-for-41 (.195) throughout spring, however, prompting the Reds to ship him off to the minors to start the season. Jennings does have an opt-out option before Opening Day, which he'll likely utilize in an attempt to latch on elsewhere.
Jennings' chances of winning a roster spot got better Monday with the Reds releasing Ryan Raburn. Both Jennings and Raburn were NRI's, so now the Reds only have to clear one 40-man roster spot. There's some chance that the team will keep just four reserve hitters, so Jennings could get more plate appearances than your average backup outfielder.
Jennings (hip) is batting seventh and playing center field during Sunday's spring training game against the Mariners, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports. Jennings was scratched from Thursday's game with what was being identified as "right hip flexor stiffness." The veteran outfielder said that he wasn't worried about the injury, and the fact that he's suiting up Sunday confirms that it was nothing serious. He'll continue to battle for an Opening Day outfield spot.