Stephenson injury shuffles Reds rotation

  • Mark Schmetzer
  • Contributing Writer
5:27 p.m Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017 Sports
Reds starter Tim Adleman pitches against the Diamondbacks on Wednesday, July 19, 2017, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. David Jablonski/Staff

Right-hander Tim Adleman’s demotion from the starting rotation to the bullpen lasted a total of one start.

Adleman’s recent slump prompted manager Bryan Price to drop him from the rotation and replace him with rookie right-hander Asher Wojciechowski, who started on Friday, but two injury-related developments forced Price to give Adleman another shot.

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The Reds placed rookie right-hander Robert Stephenson on the 10-day disabled list Sunday with a contusion of his right shoulder he suffered trying to make a diving catch of a Starling Marte bunt in the sixth inning at Pittsburgh on Wednesday.

“That day (in Pittsburgh diving for a bunt) obviously when you’re throwing you have a lot of adrenaline, so you’re not going to feel it,” said Stephenson who allowed two hits and one run in 5 2/3 innings. “I slept on it that night. It felt a little stiff. I had it checked out by (Reds medical director Dr. Timothy Kremchek). I have a bruised rotator cuff. I would be available to start (Monday) if I really wanted to, but there is no reason to push it.”

“I don’t think it’ll be long,” Price said. “We’re hoping, over the course of the 10-day stint on the disabled list, he’ll be fine to jump back in and start pitching again. We did an MRI – wanted to be cautious and didn’t want to rush him to pitch in five days.”

Stephenson’s plan is rest and rehab.

“They want me to go three days without throwing and do rehab,” he said. “I will start playing catch again (Monday). Hopefully, everything goes well. I’ll throw a bullpen the next couple days.

“I’ll do some rehab and get it strong, so I’ll be able to go into the rotation the next time through.”

Right-hander Scott Feldman could’ve been a candidate to take Stephenson’s slot in the rotation, but Price admitted on Sunday that his proclamation on Saturday that Feldman would pitch in the next five days was optimistic.

Feldman has been on the disabled list since July 18 with a sore right knee.

“That’s probably not quite as likely,” Price said. “Upon further review, he’s a little further away – not from pitching, but if he has to run the bases, some of the agility stuff around the mound, just not quite as comfortable that he can do that yet. So, we’re going to hold off on Scott and see if we can get him more comfortable in the other parts of the game.”

Hello, again: To replace Stephenson on the roster and Adleman in the bullpen, the Reds recalled right-hander Lisalverto Bonilla from Triple-A Louisville. This stint with Cincinnati will be Bonilla’s fifth of the season. Bonilla is a combined 1-3 in nine games, including four starts, over his previous tours of duty with the Reds.

As expected, Cincinnati also activated shortstop Zack Cozart from the 10-day disabled list. Cozart, as planned, started against St. Louis, even though pre-game rain left the turf damp Cozart had been out since July 29 with a strained right quad. He went 1-for-5 with a first-inning single.

Outfielder Phillip Ervin was optioned to Louisville to make room for Cozart. Ervin, recalled from the Bats on Tuesday in the flurry of roster moves made by Cincinnati in the wake of trading left-hander Tony Cingrani to Los Angeles, didn’t make an appearance in the five games played by the Reds during his stay.

Welcome, Padres: Adleman (5-9, 5.42 earned-run average) will make his first career appearance against San Diego when the Padres and Reds meet Monday at 7:10 p.m. in the opener of a four-game series. He’ll be opposed by right-hander Jhoulys Chacin (11-7, 3.99), who leads San Diego’s pitchers in wins. Chacin is 2-2 with a 3.00 ERA in seven career games against the Reds, including five starts, and he is 0-1 with a 2.70 ERA in three games, two of them starts, at Great American Ball Park.

San Diego swept Cincinnati in a three-game series at Petco Park in June.