Stephenson and the Rockies agreed to a one-year, $805,000 deal Friday, avoiding arbitration.
Stephenson came over in a trade from the Reds in November. Where exactly he fits into the Rockies' bullpen depends on whether or not he looks more like he did in 2019 (3.76 ERA) or 2020 (9.90 ERA).
The Rockies acquired Stephenson and outfielder Jameson Hannah from the Reds on Wednesday in exchange for pitchers Jeff Hoffman and Case Williams, Robert Murray of FanSided.com reports.
The deal features two MLB pieces in Stephenson and Hoffman and two prospects in Hannah and Williams changing organizations. Like Hoffman, Stephenson is a former first-round draft pick who transitioned from starting to relief duty early on during his big-league career. A back strain limited Stephenson to just 11 innings with the Reds in 2020, but when he was healthy late in 2019, he showed some signs of dominance as a late-inning arm. However, even if Stephenson is able to avoid the injured list in Colorado, pitching at Coors Field will likely hurt his chances of delivering the type of ratios that will be useful in fantasy.
Stephenson gave up three runs in the ninth inning while retiring only one batter against the Cubs on Friday, forcing the Reds to turn to Raisel Iglesias to close out the game.
Stephenson had entered the game protecting a 6-2 lead, but three hits -- two of them homers -- later and the Reds were hanging on for dear life. This might prevent the Reds from having Iglesias available for more than a batter or two in Saturday's doubleheader.
Stephenson did not allow a baserunner in a scoreless eighth inning during Monday's 4-2 loss to the Brewers. He struck out one.
Stephenson was activated from the injured list earlier Monday after dealing with a back strain that held him out since July 25. The right-hander struck out Mike Moustakas to start the frame and got the next two hitters to ground out. Stephenson figures to see substantial action late in ball games going forward.
Stephenson (back) was activated from the 10-day injured list Monday.
The right-hander made just one appearance in late July before a back strain forced him to the IL. The 2011 first-round pick fizzled out as a starter but found his niche in relief last year, posting a 3.76 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 11 holds. He finished third among qualified relievers in swinging-strike rate and should eventually regain a prominent spot near the back of the Reds' bullpen.
Stephenson (back) is with the Reds on the current road trip, and manager David Bell said he'll be activated soon, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
The 27-year-old wasn't activated for Sunday's series finale in St. Louis, but he seems likely to rejoin the active roster during the four-game set in Milwaukee, which begins Monday. Stephenson made one appearance before landing on the injured list in late July with the back strain.
Stephenson (back) faced hitters at the Reds' alternate training site Wednesday and is nearing a return, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
Stephenson was placed on the injured list July 28 with a back strain. His lone appearance came July 25 when he gave up two runs on in one-third of an inning against Detroit.
Stephenson was placed on the 10-day injured list Tuesday with a back strain.
Stephenson had a rough outing in his first relief appearance of the season, giving up two runs on two hits and no walks while recording one strikeout as the only out he logged. However, the injury may have had something to do with his struggles, and he'll be sidelined for a minimum of 10 days. It's unclear exactly how much time he'll miss.
Stephenson allowed a homer to Austin Romine and a subsequent single to JaCoby Jones on Saturday, with Jones later coming around to score in the Reds' loss to the Tigers.
Stephenson was one of three Reds relievers to allow a homer in the loss. He was behind schedule in summer camp due to a wrist issue and might not yet be up to speed.
Stephenson (wrist) hasn't appeared in a scrimmage yet, but threw live batting practice Sunday at the Reds' secondary training facility at Prasco Park, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports.
Stephenson is expected to play a pivotal role in the Reds' bullpen after a breakout season in that capacity last year, though he might not be at full strength right away.
Stephenson returned to Cincinnati's summer camp Thursday after missing time with a sore wrist, C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic reports.
It doesn't sound like the issue was anything overly serious, as Stephenson missed just a couple of days as a result. The right-hander established himself in Cincinnati's bullpen in 2019, posting a 3.76 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 81:24 K:BB across 64.2 innings of relief.
Stephenson spent a good part of his offseason working on improving against opposing baserunners, who were six of seven in stolen-base attempts against him, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
After struggling to gain a foothold in the majors, Stephenson took a major step forward in the bullpen in 2019 and can now afford to refine certain weaknesses, like his ability to hold runners. He'll likely be deployed in a higher-leverage role than he was last season.
Stephenson was sent home Saturday with flu-like symptoms, C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic reports.
The bug has been making its rounds in the Reds' clubhouse since their series in Seattle. Stephenson was one of five players sent home. It's hard to imagine we see Stephenson again before Tuesday.
Stephenson was fantastic in relief on Sunday against the Rockies, throwing two perfect innings with four strikeouts.
Stephenson had been a little shaky since coming off the IL in mid-June, but he's been strong in two outings after the All-Star break. With David Hernandez really struggling, Stephenson's role in the bullpen could be changed to include more critical situations soon.
Stephenson (neck) was activated off the 10-day injured list Sunday.
Stephenson landed on the IL with the neck strain at the end of May and made two rehab appearances with Triple-A Louisville to clear the way for his activation. The 26-year-old has a 3.96 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 35:10 K:BB through 25 innings this season.
Stephenson (neck) will start a rehab assignment at Triple-A Louisville on Tuesday, C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic reports.
Stephenson has been on the shelf since May 31 due to a neck strain, but he's set to take a step forward in his rehab process. He'll likely only need a few minor-league appearances prior to being activated considering he's only been on the injured list for 10 days.
Stephenson was placed on the 10-day injured list Friday with a cervical strain.
Stephenson apparently sustained the injury Tuesday when he allowed two runs over 1.2 innings versus the Pirates. The move is retroactive to Wednesday so the 26-year-old will be eligible to return June 8, though the severity of the injury remains unclear.
Stephenson gave up two runs in the ninth inning Tuesday night against the Pirates, allowing two hits and a walk over 1.2 innings, striking out two.
With the outing Stephenson's ERA jumped to 3.96, as he's starting to struggle a little bit in the month of May.
Stephenson (2-0) struck out both batters he faced Tuesday night and got the win when the Reds rallied in the bottom of the sixth inning against the Braves.
Stephenson continues to impress. His ERA is down to 1.50 and his WHIP down to 0.67, and he has 18 strikeouts against just two walks in 12 innings so far. His velocity and his command have both improved, and his slider in particular has become a huge plus pitch.
Stephenson pitched a scoreless inning in relief of the injured Sonny Gray on Thursday and got the win.
Pitching in relief has suited Stephenson well so far in this young season. He has allowed one run over 6.1 innings, striking out eight batters while giving up three hits and a walk. The competition level picks up for Reds pitchers soon, with them embarking on a West Coast road swing.
|Last 7 Games|
|06/11||@ CIN||L 5-11||1.0||0||0||1||1|
|06/10||@ MIA||L 4-11||1.0||0||0||1||0|
|06/04||vs OAK||L 5-9||0.1||0||1||3||1|
|06/03||vs TEX||W 11-6||1.0||0||0||0||2|
|05/29||@ PIT||L 0-4||1.0||2||1||0||1|
|05/25||@ NYM||L 1-3||1.0||2||0||1||2|
|05/19||@ SD||L 0-3||1.0||0||0||1||2|
|More Pitching Stats|
|Minor League Pitching Stats|
|2013||AA-Pensacola Blue Wahoo||16.2||4||4||0||0||2||0||18||13||17||5.00||1.852|
|2014||AA-Pensacola Blue Wahoo||136.2||27||26||0||7||10||0||140||74||114||4.76||1.380|
|2015||AA-Pensacola Blue Wahoo||78.1||14||14||1||4||7||0||89||43||53||3.69||1.229|