Guardians DFA Reyes in the midst of a tough 22nd season

Cleveland – Do you think all the confusion in the Guardian List has happened? Not so fast.

The Guardians made a surprising announcement on Saturday afternoon, when they revealed that they had appointed their designated defender/batsman Franmel Reyes for the job.

“I think we want to see our guys play, and that gives the opportunity maybe for someone to claim it,” Guardians coach Terry Francona said. “If they do, that’s good for him. If they don’t, probably, [we will] Keep it… It doesn’t change much if no one demands it.”

Let’s try to crack this decision as best we can to explain why it happened.

Reyes has had a crazy fall since opening day. He entered the year with many anticipating a breakout season. On April 7, Reyes opened the year at the Cleveland Cleanup District with only high hopes. Since then, he has struggled to amass more than a few matches to look like the strong footballer the club has known before.

Reyes hit .213 with a mere 0.604 points per second in 70 games with the Guardians this season. He fired just nine home runs with a whopping 104 strikes in 263 hits bats (a brutal 37.1 percent strike rate). There have been comments throughout the year that he needs to get in better shape, but that hasn’t seen much improvement.

So, when it came to the beginning of August and nothing was going in the right direction, even after the team tried to get him back on track after his stint on the injured list, it became difficult for the club to continue his situation. Reyes is in the lineup, demoting him to Triple-A Columbus on Tuesday.

“He wasn’t playing fastball, it looked like a hanging cracker ball, he was hitting it maybe for one, and there was a sprint on his turf every once in a while,” Francona said. “But he just didn’t get the pitches he used to.”

All this explains his demotion to Triple-A. The decision to assign him the task is even more confusing to find out.

Cleveland tried to move Reyes before Tuesday’s trading deadline but failed to do so. Perhaps that means interest in him is low across the league, and the Guardians think he can undo the waivers and end up back in their system without taking the 40-player spot as he works through his struggles. But even this is not cut and dried.

Reyes is still eligible to arbitrate. This year, he signed a one-year deal worth $4.55 million. That might go down a bit, but whatever he puts up in judging will be high relative to his level of production in 2022. If he’s still on Cleveland’s 40-man roster, there’s a good chance he didn’t go under tender at the end of the season to avoid spending that much. of money it. But if he clears the concessions and returns to the Guardians system, he’ll become a free agent for the Minor League for ’23 because he’s no longer protected on the 40-man roster.

Well, we’ll take a second to absorb all of that and come up with a simpler answer as to why this step makes sense.

An easy way to watch it is that it also saves space on Columbus’s roster, which could pave the way for Guardians prospect #2 George Valera to move to Triple-A from Double-A.

There is a lot that can happen when it comes to Reyes’ future. It’s hard to know if another team will claim it will have to go through the financial confusion Cleveland is trying to avoid in the upcoming arbitration process. Perhaps another team is willing to take that risk.

It’s easy to focus on the negative now that you’ve made that decision. But Reyes’ track record still works in his favour. He’s still on the heels of the 30 homer season with his career best .846 OPS. He hit 37 long balls in 2019. There are things to like about his kit. It’s now just deciding where he’ll be able to try to correct for the future.

“He gave us everything he got,” said Victor Rodriguez, assistant hitting team and Guardians coach. “He wanted to do it, but he just wasn’t able to do it. Sometimes we saw signs that he was going out. … He’s young. I think his best years are still to come. I hope he gets the chance somewhere and can continue.”

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