CINCINNATI -- Pitcher Dan Straily's name appeared on the Major League Baseball transactions a few times over the past week. But one impersonal sentence doesn't exactly explain how Straily got from A to B, or from A to B to C to D. When Straily was claimed off of waivers by the Reds on Friday, it was his third team in one week.
"It's been a whirlwind, to say the least," Straily said. "It has to have been over 5,000 miles of travel. There were a couple of long days."
Straily, 27, spent most of Spring Training in Florida with the Astros, until he was traded to the Padres for catcher Erik Kratz on March 28 during a game against the Braves in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
"Fourth inning, I got tapped on the shoulder. They said, 'Hey, you got traded to San Diego,'" Straily explained. "Cool, I packed up for a 7 a.m. flight, got to Arizona on Tuesday night [the 29th]."
That was only the beginning of Straily's trek. On Wednesday, he threw for the Padres in a Minor League game in Peoria, Ariz., and broke camp with the team on Thursday and flew to San Diego.
Then came the next sudden change of plans.
"I woke up on Friday morning and found out I was on waivers," Straily said. "They essentially tried to sneak me through waivers."
Since Straily was out of Minor League options, he could be claimed by any team before being sent down. That team proved to be the Reds, and that also meant another cross-country flight. Straily landed in Cincinnati at close to midnight ET on Friday night and reported for his physical at 6 a.m. Saturday.
Since the Reds had an exhibition game vs. the Pirates in Indianapolis, Straily accompanied the club on the bus, threw a bullpen session at Victory Field and returned to Cincinnati with the team.
"I was just out of it. I was just tired," he said.
On Sunday morning, Straily arrived at Great American Ball Park for a pre-Opening Day workout and was told to trim down his beard. Yet he wasn't told he made the club, officially, until the team stretched a couple of hours later. Straily spent exactly zero days of Spring Training bonding with this team, but he wasn't too concerned.
"We just finished going over all the plays, all the signs. That was the easy part," Straily said. "Getting to know the guys is the aspect I missed out on in Spring Training. I showed up here and the only person I knew was the bullpen catcher, Dusty [Hughes]. He was the bullpen catcher when I was in [Triple-A] Sacramento. It's kind of a weird feeling, but hopefully we can make up some time here. The guys have been very welcoming, very friendly. I'm getting to know some people."
Straily, who also previously pitched for the A's and Cubs, has been a starter his whole career. With the Reds, he will be a long reliever in a swing role that could see him making some starts. He did not appear in Monday's game vs. the Phillies.
"Over here, it doesn't make a difference what the role is. I will come out here, be ready to pitch and give it everything I have whenever they hand me the baseball," Straily said. "And when they take it from me, I will be done for the day."