Reds: Iglesias MRI shows non-throwing contusion

Reds pitcher Raisel Iglesias got some good news when results of an MRI showed just a contusion and no structural damage to his right elbow Wednesday. File
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Reds pitcher Raisel Iglesias got some good news when results of an MRI showed just a contusion and no structural damage to his right elbow Wednesday. File

Reds pitcher Raisel Iglesias had an MRI on his right elbow and was diagnosed with a bone bruise not related to throwing.

Rather, Iglesias suffered the bruise at home. He will be off four more days before he can throw again.

“The good news is it doesn’t look like it’s a huge setback or that there are any structural issues at all,” manager Bryan Price said. “The negative is the fact that he will have four more days off before he begins to throw again. We have to see how comfortable we are by opening day with his readiness.”

Iglesias had been pitching well, and without issue. He last worked in a game March 14.

“There were some other things, a stiffness that is consistent with a contusion,” Price said. “They needed to stop the activity in order to focus on getting the inflammation out of there.”

The 27-year-old right-hander is expected to begin a throwing program Sunday.

Elsewhere on the injury front, outfielder Billy Hamilton has had some Achilles inflammation that has kept him out of four games in a row. The speedster hasn’t played since Friday but plans to DH today against the White Sox.

“It is something that during the season he could have grinded it out,” Price said. “I want him to get some at-bats. He is on schedule to go to Vegas and play center field.”

The Reds play the Cubs in a pair of split-squad games in Las Vegas on Saturday and Sunday while the rest of the squad plays the Oakland Athletics in Mesa on Saturday night and the Mariners in Goodyear on Sunday.

Opening eyes: Evan Mitchell, the Reds' 13th-round pick in the 2013 draft, put himself on the map this spring. The 25-year old entered games in the middle of innings, usually after the starting pitcher exceeded his pitch count.

Tuesday, Cody Reed reached his pitch limit and Mitchell finished the inning for him by striking out Mike Trout.

“His numbers have been good,” Price said.

Mitchell has pitched 5 2/3 innings spanning seven games. He has allowed six unearned runs, including five Tuesday as he took a loss to the Angels.

“It was valuable for us to be able to see a true sinking fastball and really a solid, plus slider,” Price said. “That works well at this level. He showed athleticism. He has arm strength. He can control the running game. He wasn’t scared by the competition. We didn’t make it easy for him.”

Roster moves: The Reds optioned outfielder Phillip Ervin and outfielder/first baseman Christian Walker to the minors and reassigned pitchers Alejandro Chacin and Mitchell, catchers Chad Wallach and Shawn Zarraga, and shortstop Zach Vincej to minor league camp.

The Reds have 41 players remaining, 21 pitchers, four catchers, five infielders and 10 outfielders.

Vincej had been the only pure shortstop competing for a backup role, and had looked good in the field.

“He is our first line of defense,” Price said, “if something happens to Zack (Cozart).”