Bronson Arroyo re-signed with the Reds in early February, and his chances of opening the season with one of the team's five rotation spots increased with news of Homer Bailey's surgery to remove bone chips from his arm. Having last appeared in the big leagues as a 37-year-old with Arizona in 2014, expectations are understandably low for the veteran right-hander, who will be 40 before the 2017 Cactus League schedule begins. If he can chew up innings at a better than replacement-level clip, Arroyo may find a way to hang around for another year as a mentor to the organization's younger arms. Keep in mind, however, that his career 5.8 K/9 leaves him very dependent on the defense behind him, and the contract he signed in February is a minor-league deal, so the organization has no obligation to keep him around if the return doesn't go as planned.
Arroyo is close to locking down a rotation spot with the Reds, so long as he can prove healthy in his final spring training start on Tuesday, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports. Because Arroyo has sputtered with an illness and then getting clocked in the head by teammate Devin Mesoraco's throw, he hasn't been stretched out beyond four innings yet. "I think what we have to see, and we've seen it for four innings, we have to see it for those five- and six-inning outings," manager Bryan Price said. "Beyond just the general health, I'm really pleased with how he's pitched and how he's rebounded from pitching. The question coming in was the durability and the ability to provide length. I would be very satisfied and optimistic to see as he goes through his next two outings if he's able to satisfy that requirement. I don't have any doubt at this point in time that he's going to be pitching in the big leagues with us."
Arroyo (head) is scheduled to pitch in a minor-league game Tuesday, Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Arroyo was fortunate to avoid a concussion after he was struck in the head in a March 18 on an errant throw by catcher Devin Mesoraco, and after a week off to recover from the head injury, it looks like he's been given clearance to return to the mound. Assuming Tuesday's outing goes well, Arroyo will pitch in another minor-league outing April 2 before rejoining the Reds in Cincinnati. At that point, the team would decide whether or not to add him to the 40-man roster or go with some of its younger internal options to fill out the rotation prior to Opening Day.
Arroyo (head) is not in concussion protocol, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports. Arroyo was hit in the head Saturday by a throw from catcher Devin Mesoraco, who was attempting to cut down a base stealer. Fortunately, Arroyo checked out OK after leaving the exhibition, and the plan was for him to head back to the Reds' spring training complex for more throwing. The 40-year-old is competing for one of the three open spots in the Cincinnati rotation.
Arroyo left Saturday's game after being hit in the head by a throw from catcher Devin Mesoraco. Mesoraco attempted to throw to second base on a stolen base attempt but the throw hit Arroyo in the face. Arroyo got back onto the mound, but after talking with the team trainer, he was pulled with one out remaining in the second inning. Look for the Reds to provide an update on Arroyo's status in the relatively near future.
Arroyo threw two scoreless innings Sunday against the Brewers in his Cactus League debut. He struck out two while allowing one hit. Arroyo still has a reasonable chance of landing an Opening Day rotation slot, but don't confuse that with having fantasy upside. Not only is he going to provide fewer strikeouts than most every starter, but his team will provide little upside in adding wins.