CINCINNATI -- For most of this rebuilding season, several of the pieces the Reds expected for the process weren't at manager Bryan Price's disposal. Several were injured, and others have been getting needed development time in Triple-A.
"It's exciting because this is what we've all talked about," Price said. "We've anticipated it would happen a little bit sooner. We didn't anticipate the health issues, and didn't think we'd come out of Spring Training with all the issues and injuries. I did anticipate we'd get to the point where these young guys would impact our ballclub, and begin to learn how to play at this level and find their way to success."
More help could be coming. Pitcher Robert Stephenson, who already made two spot starts in the big leagues, is performing well at Triple-A Louisville with a 3.29 ERA in 11 starts. Outfielder and top prospect Jesse Winker was just placed on the disabled list with a right wrist sprain, which stopped a decent month of June where he was batting .371 after a slow start. A veteran, pitcher Homer Bailey, could be back from Tommy John surgery rehab in mid-July.
Among those around since the start of 2016, left fielder Adam Duvall has become a breakout player, and is tied for the Major League lead with 20 home runs. Despite time off with concussion symptoms, center fielder Billy Hamilton has started hitting, while making great defensive plays. Veterans Joey Votto, Jay Bruce and Zack Cozart are producing.
Amid the additions could be some pending subtractions. The value for a lefty power hitter like Bruce and an All-Star caliber shortstop like Cozart should be high approaching the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline.
But the next month-plus could still be encouraging for Reds fans. Reinforcements are arriving at a time when Cincinnati has played better. After a 17-35 start to the season, the club is 10-8 this month.
On Saturday at Houston, Reed delivered seven innings with nine strikeouts in his debut. DeSclafani has a 2.08 ERA through two starts after returning from the DL. Lorenzen, who had an elbow strain, is on a rehab assignment with Louisville, while Iglesias is on a rehab assignment at Double-A Pensacola after he had a shoulder impingement. Although considered starting pitcher prospects, both are expected to bolster the bullpen when they are ready.
Looking a little further down the road, lefty prospect Amir Garrett was promoted from Pensacola to Louisville after posting a 1.75 ERA in 13 games. Rookie Davis, acquired in the Aroldis Chapman trade, has a 2.39 ERA in 10 starts for Pensacola, which just won its first-half division title.
"For me, personally, it's exciting, and I know there's more to come," Price said. "We'll probably move up some of our Double-A prospects after the first half is over, and get more of our better young prospects even closer to the big leagues."
Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.