Is Michael Lorenzen A Starter?

Frank Jones

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Is Michael Lorenzen A Starter

Michael Lorenzen has been a valuable player for the Cincinnati Reds since being drafted in 2013. He’s shown versatility as both a starter and reliever, but the question remains: is he better suited as a starter or a reliever?

Lorenzen made just five starts from 2016-2021 for the Reds including none in 2021.

He’s shown to be a capable reliever, judging from his 3.74 ERA in that role. However, as a starter, Lorenzen was fine last season. He had a 4.24 ERA in 18 starts and 97.2 innings pitched.

It’s clear that he has the ability to pitch effectively in either role, but the decision ultimately lies with the Red’s coaching staff. Some argue that Lorenzen’s greatest strength is his ability to pitch multiple innings.

As a reliever, he can come into a game and pitch for several innings in relief, effectively saving the bullpen. However, as a starter, Lorenzen would have the opportunity to showcase his abilities for a longer period of time.

The Case for Starter

Michael Lorenzen, a pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds, has primarily been used as a reliever for most of his career. However, his success as a starter in 2020, combined with the Reds’ need for starting pitching, makes a strong case for him to be utilized as a starter going forward.

Lorenzen’s Success as a Starter in 2020

In 2020, Lorenzen had a 4.24 ERA in 18 starts and pitched 97.2 innings. While these numbers may not be mind-boggling, they are solid, especially for a pitcher transitioning from a reliever role to a starter role.

Additionally, his strikeout-to-walk ratio was 3.00, which shows his ability to control the game and limit runs. Lorenzen’s success as a starter in 2020 proves that he has the potential to be a reliable starter for the Reds.

The Need for Starting Pitching on the Reds’ Roster

The Reds’ starting rotation is currently thin, as they have lost key starters Trevor Bauer and Anthony DeSclafani in free agency.

The remaining rotation consists of Sonny Gray, Luis Castillo, and Tyler Mahle, with question marks surrounding their ability to consistently perform. Adding Lorenzen to the rotation would provide much-needed depth and consistency to the pitching staff.

Lorenzen’s Versatility Makes Him a Valuable Asset in the Rotation

One of Lorenzen’s strengths is his versatility. He has experience as both a starter and a reliever, and his ability to seamlessly transition between roles benefits the team.

If a starter gets injured or struggles in a game, Lorenzen can fill in as a spot starter or pitch multiple innings out of the bullpen. This versatility makes him a valuable asset to the Reds’ pitching staff.

Overall, Michael Lorenzen’s successful stint as a starter in 2020, paired with the Reds’ need for starting pitching and Lorenzen’s versatility, provide a strong case for him to be utilized as a starter going forward.

While he has been primarily used as a reliever throughout his career, transitioning him to a starting role could prove beneficial for both him and the team. The Reds should consider utilizing Lorenzen as a starter in the upcoming season to strengthen their pitching staff.

The Case for Reliever

Michael Lorenzen is a talented pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds who has had success in both starting and relief roles. This essay will examine the case for utilizing Lorenzen as a reliever.

Lorenzen has shown himself to be a capable reliever, as evidenced by his 3.74 ERA in that role. For comparison, his career ERA as a starter is 4.95. Pitchers often have different skillsets depending on their role, and Lorenzen’s success as a reliever suggests that this may be the best fit for him.

Relieving is a Specialized Skillset

Not all pitchers are equally adept at both starting and relief roles. Relieving requires a different set of skills, such as the ability to pitch in short bursts, quickly warm up, and throw high-intensity pitches.

By focusing on relieving, Lorenzen can hone these specific skills and potentially become an even more effective pitcher overall.

Bullpen Flexibility

Using Lorenzen as a reliever can increase bullpen flexibility. If he is able to pitch multiple innings at a time, this could allow the Reds to use him strategically in games where the starting pitcher struggles or the bullpen becomes taxed.

Additionally, Lorenzen’s ability to pitch in high-leverage situations could make him a valuable asset when the game is on the line.

While Lorenzen has had some success as a starter, there is a strong case to be made for utilizing him primarily as a reliever. His success in that role suggests that he has a specialized skillset that could be honed through continued work as a reliever.

Additionally, using Lorenzen in the bullpen could increase flexibility and potentially help the Reds win games.

The Reds’ Current Situation

The Cincinnati Reds have historically been known for their pitching prowess, with legends such as Tom Seaver and Johnny Cueto leading the way. This season, however, the team is facing some challenges when it comes to their starting rotation.

One factor that could potentially help is the return of Michael Lorenzen, a versatile pitcher who has primarily served as a reliever in recent years.

The Reds’ Starting Pitching Woes

The Reds’ starting rotation has struggled in the early part of the 2021 season. None of their starters have an ERA below 4.00, and they have given up a combined 33 home runs, which is the most in the National League. Additionally, the team has had to deal with injuries to key pitchers such as Sonny Gray and Wade Miley.

Michael Lorenzen’s Recent History

As mentioned earlier, Lorenzen has primarily served as a reliever for the Reds in recent years. He has put up solid numbers in that role, but he has also shown the ability to start games when needed. Last season, he made 18 starts and had a 4.24 ERA in 97.2 innings pitched.

The Reds’ Current Starting Pitching Options

The Reds’ starting pitching options are limited at the moment. Their best starter, Gray, is currently on the injured list, and the rest of the rotation has struggled.

Tyler Mahle has shown flashes of potential, but he has also been inconsistent. Jeff Hoffman and Luis Castillo have both been disappointing so far this season, and Miley has been average at best.

The Impact of Lorenzen’s Absence as a Starter

Lorenzen’s absence as a starter has been felt by the Reds. He has shown in the past that he is a capable starter, and his versatility has been a valuable asset for the team. With the rotation struggling, having another reliable option would be a huge help.

The Potential Benefits of Shifting Lorenzen Back to a Starting Role

If the Reds were to shift Lorenzen back to a starting role, they would be gaining an experienced pitcher who has shown the ability to succeed in that role. Additionally, it would free up a spot in the bullpen for other relievers to step up and contribute.

This would allow the team to have more flexibility in their pitching staff, which could pay dividends as the season goes on.

The Reds are facing some challenges when it comes to their starting rotation, but the return of Michael Lorenzen as a starter could potentially help improve the team’s performance.

With his versatility and experience, he could be a valuable addition to the rotation and help alleviate some of the pressure on the struggling starters. Overall, the Reds will need to find a way to address their pitching issues if they hope to contend this season.

The Future for Lorenzen

The Potential Career Paths for Lorenzen as a Starter or Reliever

Michael Lorenzen has shown his versatility as both a starter and reliever in his career so far. He has struggled with injuries over the past few seasons, limiting his opportunities to start, but when healthy, he has shown the ability to be a solid starter. Lorenzen has also been reliable out of the bullpen, with a 3.74 ERA in relief.

The decision to use Lorenzen as a starter or reliever moving forward will likely depend on several factors, including his health, the team’s needs, and his skillset.

Lorenzen could potentially see more opportunities as a starter if the Reds need depth in their rotation or if he can stay healthy for an extended period of time. Alternatively, he could continue to thrive as a reliever and be a valuable asset to the team’s bullpen.

His Role With the Reds Moving Forward

Lorenzen’s role with the Reds moving forward will likely be determined by how he performs and how the team’s needs evolve over time. Currently, he is on the 60-day injured list with a hamstring injury, and his return date is uncertain. If he is able to recover and pitch effectively, he could see time in both roles with the team.

Lorenzen has been a valuable member of the Reds’ bullpen in recent seasons, and he could continue to be an important contributor in that role. However, if he is able to stay healthy and pitch effectively as a starter, he could earn more opportunities in that role as well.

Ultimately, his role with the team will depend on his performance and how the team’s needs evolve over time.

How the Reds Can Optimize Lorenzen’s Talents

To optimize Lorenzen’s talents, the Reds should focus on keeping him healthy and utilizing his versatility. Lorenzen has shown the ability to be effective in multiple roles and can provide value to the team in both ways.

If the Reds decide to use Lorenzen as a starter, they should give him regular opportunities to build his stamina and sharpen his skills. They should also closely monitor his workload and limit his innings if necessary, given his injury history.

If the Reds use Lorenzen as a reliever, they should consider using him in high-leverage situations where he can showcase his ability to get outs in pressure situations. They should also give him regular appearances to help him stay sharp and maintain his form.

Overall, the Reds have a valuable asset in Michael Lorenzen, and they should focus on keeping him healthy and using him in ways that maximize his talents. Whether he is used as a starter or reliever, he can be an important contributor to the team’s success.

Pitching History

Lorenzen’s Pitching Statistics

Lorenzen recorded a 6.75 ERA in 2021 with the Cincinnati Reds in 18 games. He has a career of 4.24 ERA and a 4.16 FIP in seven seasons. Lorenzen primarily throws a fastball-slider combination, with occasional splitters and changeups.

Impact on the Detroit Tigers

Lorenzen was signed by the Tigers as a free agent in December 2021. He is expected to compete for a spot in the starting rotation, or alternatively, serve as a high-leverage reliever. Lorenzen’s versatility as a two-way player makes him a valuable asset for both his pitching and hitting abilities.

Injuries and Durability Concerns

Lorenzen has struggled with injuries during his career, including elbow and shoulder issues. He missed significant time in 2021 due to a hamstring strain. The Tigers will need to monitor his workload and utilization to maximize his impact on the team.

Strengths and Weaknesses as a Pitcher

Lorenzen possesses a fastball that tops out around 98 mph, which he complements with a sharp slider. He also generates a decent amount of groundballs when compared to other pitchers. However, his command and control have been inconsistent at times, leading to high walk rates.

Overall Evaluation

Lorenzen has shown flashes of excellence on the mound, but his injury history and inconsistent performance are causes for concern. However, he brings a unique skill set to the Tigers, and they will be hoping that he can regain his form and stay healthy. If he can pitch up to his potential and contribute offensively, Lorenzen has the potential to be a valuable asset for the team.

Why is Michael Lorenzen Not Playing?

  • Injury: Lorenzen suffered a left groin strain during the offseason, causing him to miss the first few weeks of the 2023 regular season.

  • Rehab: To recover from his injury, Lorenzen had to undergo rehab, which included a minor-league rehab start with Triple-A Toledo.

  • Struggle: Though Lorenzen returned from injury, he struggled during his lone minor-league rehab start, which cast doubt on his ability to perform in the major leagues.

  • Wait: Due to his struggles, Lorenzen was kept out of the starting rotation and had to wait until the Tigers’ coaching staff felt confident enough in his abilities to give him a chance.

  • Return: After weeks of waiting and rehab, Lorenzen finally returned to the starting rotation on Saturday against the Giants, but is not recommended for fantasy streamers due to his injury and uncertain performance.

To Recap

It’s difficult to determine whether Michael Lorenzen is better suited as a starter or a reliever. His versatility and ability to pitch effectively in both roles make him a valuable asset for the Reds.

Ultimately, the decision will come down to the team’s needs and the coaching staff’s preferences. Regardless of his role, Lorenzen will continue to be a valuable player for the Reds moving forward.

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