Cleveland Guardians designate Franmil Reyes for assignment

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Cleveland Guardians' Franmil Reyes watches his RBI-single off New York Yankees relief pitcher Albert Abreu during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Cleveland, Sunday, July 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Phil Long)
Cleveland Guardians' Franmil Reyes watches his RBI-single off New York Yankees relief pitcher Albert Abreu during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Cleveland, Sunday, July 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Phil Long)

CLEVELAND — Houston Astros players were taking batting practice in the 4 o'clock hour Saturday at Progressive Field.

First pitch was about two hours away and highlights of Guardians players were playing on the large video board beyond the left field fence.

Among the highlights were home runs and extra base hits by Jose Ramirez, Amed Rosario, Andres Gimenez, Josh Naylor, Oscar Gonzalez, Steven Kwan, Owen Miller, Myles Straw and Franmil Reyes from earlier this season.

The song "'Life in the Fast Lane'" by the Eagles played in the background, which was a bit ironic with Saturday's news that the Guardians designated Reyes for assignment and released Bobby Bradley on Saturday in a series of moves.

Earlier this season, Reyes and Bradley were starters.

By Aug. 6, Bradley is gone and Reyes could be next depending on whether he is traded, cut or sent back to Triple-A Columbus.

"We want to see our young guys play," Guardians manager Terry Francona said before Saturday's game.

Reyes and Bradley had each struggled this season with Cleveland after being in the opening day Opening Day starting lineup. Reyes was Cleveland's designated hitter and batted fourth and Bradley was the Guardians' first baseman and batted fifth April 7 against the host Kansas City Royals.

Cleveland Guardians' first baseman Bobby Bradley covers first base during a spring training baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds Friday, March 18, 2022, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)
Cleveland Guardians' first baseman Bobby Bradley covers first base during a spring training baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds Friday, March 18, 2022, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

News from earlier this month:Guardians further commit to youth movement after inactive deadline; Franmil Reyes optioned

That opening day Opening Day lineup also included former Guardian Yu Chang starting at second base and hitting sixth. Chang, 26, is now a member of the Tampa Bay Rays after a brief stint with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Reyes, 27, had a .213 batting average with nine home runs, 28 RBIs RBI, a .254 on-base percentage and a .350 slugging percentage in 70 games this season with the Guardians. He had 104 strikeouts in 280 plate appearances.

Last season in 115 games, Reyes compiled a .254 batting average with 30 home runs, 85 RBIs RBI, a .324 on-base percentage and a .522 slugging percentage. He had 149 strikeouts in 466 plate appearances.

Reyes was optioned to Triple-A Columbus on Tuesday.

"It was tough," Francona said of Reyes' season to date.

"It was difficult. You know that a guy like him can get hot and carry a team, and then they bounce off. Swing and miss comes with the territory. But he wasn't getting to the fastball and it seemed like a hanging breaking ball, he was hitting maybe for a single, and there was an occasional home run. He wasn't getting to pitches he used to."

Cleveland acquired Reyes, Yasiel Puig, Logan Allen, Scott Moss and Victor Nova in a three-team trade on July 31, 2019. The San Diego Padres received Taylor Trammell and the Cincinnati Reds acquired Trevor Bauer.

Reyes and Bradley each struggled with consistently making contact at bat while strikeouts piled up.

Bradley, 26, was Cleveland's third round pick in the 2014 MLB Draft. He made his MLB debut in 2019.

Bradley had a .118 batting average with no home runs, no RBI, a .118 on-base percentage and a .118 slugging percentage in eight games this season with the Guardians.

Last season in 74 games, Bradley posted a .208 batting average with 16 home runs, 41 RBIs, a .294 on-base percentage and a .445 slugging percentage.

The Guardians designated Bradley for assignment on May 2, he cleared waivers and was sent to Columbus on May 5.

"He was having a tough time [in Columbus]," Francona said. "... The thought is that a change of scenery would be really good for the kid. He is a good kid. He wasn't going good offensively. He was going to be a free agent in five weeks."

The Guardians also announced Saturday that it selected the contract of right-handed relief pitcher Jake Jewell from Columbus and optioned right-handed starting pitcher Hunter Gaddis to Columbus.

Gaddis cleaned out his locker in the Guardians clubhouse Saturday afternoon and departed to join the Clippers. Gaddis made his MLB debut in Friday's loss to the Astros, pitching 3⅓ innings and allowing eight earned runs, seven hits, two walks and two home runs (both to Trey Mancini). Gaddis also struck out two.

"We need to find out [what we have] and then you can make better decisions moving forward," Francona said. "... You can go from prospect to suspect, but I guess you gotta live through it."

Francona added that Jewell has a "really good change-up."

"We are trying to fortify our pen," Francona said. "... We don't want to run through our bullpen."

Guardians pitcher Aaron Civale set to return Wednesday in Detroit

Francona said right-handed pitcher Aaron Civale is set to return to the team and make a start Wednesday at Detroit against the Tigers.

"He said he felt good and is raring to go, so that is good," Francona said of Civale. "He certainly will not be fully stretched out, but he is going to pitch Wednesday."

Michael Beaven can be reached at mbeaven@thebeaconjournal.com. Follow Beaven on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MBeavenABJ.

More Guardians news:Franmil Reyes expected to be optioned to triple-A; Amed Rosario continues hot stretch

This article originally appeared on Akron Beacon Journal: Cleveland Guardians designate Franmil Reyes for assignment