The Tampa Bay Rays have acquired left-handed pitcher Cody Reed from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for right-handed pitcher Riley O’Brien.
Reed, 27, was designated for assignment by the Reds on August 24. He spent parts of five seasons with the Reds, going 2-12 with a 5.44 ERA (124-IP, 75-ER) in 51 appearances (18 starts).
In his career, he is 1-2 with a 2.72 ERA (43-IP, 13-ER) in 33 appearances out of the bullpen and 1-10 with a 6.89 ERA (81-IP, 62-ER) in 18 starts.
Reed went 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA (9.1-IP, 6-ER), 1.93 WHIP (10-H, 8-BB) and 10 strikeouts in nine appearances this season. Over the last three seasons Reed has a ground ball rate of 58.5 pct, according to Stats LLC, 10th-highest among NL pitchers with at least 50 innings from 2018-20.
Going back to Cincinnati is O’Brien, who had not yet factored into the Rays plans this season. We ranked him the No. 25 prospect in the system after a significant spike in his velocity last year:
Riley O’Brien was the Rays 8th round selection in the 2017 draft out of the College of Idaho, and split between Port Charlotte (A+) and Montgomery (AA). On the season O’Brien threw 102.2 innings while posting a 24.9% strikeout rate, 10.3% walk rate, 3.16 ERA, and 3.47 FIP.
O’Brien’s fastball has gained steam the last couple of years and now sits in the low to mid 90s and can reach 98. His best secondary is a plus curveball that sits 80-82 and an average changeup. It’s good stuff, enough to see a Nick Anderson comparison in his abilities, or even a starter if the change becomes more than fringe.
Command is the last thing O’Brien needs to clean up before really shooting up these lists. He’s more of a thrower than a threat, but that may be tied to an inconsistent delivery. If the command could catch up with the rest of his development he’d be a top-ten prospect in the system.
To make room on the 40-man roster, the Rays placed outfielder Brett Phillips on the COVID-19 Related Injured List while he completes intake protocols.