Cincinnati Reds reliever Robert Stephenson, once considered the organization’s top prospect, was traded Wednesday to the Colorado Rockies.
The Reds sent Stephenson and outfield prospect Jameson Hannah to the Rockies for right-handed pitcher Jeff Hoffman and 2020 fourth-round pick Case Williams. Hoffman had a 9.28 ERA in 16 appearances with Colorado this year.
Stephenson, who has been out of minor league options for the past two seasons, had a 9.90 ERA in 10 appearances. He yielded 11 hits in 10 innings, but eight of those hits were home runs. Stephenson was the team’s first-round pick in the 2011 MLB Draft.
Hoffman was once the centerpiece in the trade that sent longtime Rockies star Troy Tulowitzki to the Toronto Blue Jays. He hasn’t had much big-league success with a 6.40 ERA in 68 appearances, but he’s the high spin rate pitcher that the Reds have coveted in recent years.
“Jeff Hoffman fits #spincinnati with the high arm slot, high-spin, four-seamer/curveball combination, but mediocre results thus far,” ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel tweeted. “This is what Lucas Sims was when CIN grabbed him off the scrap heap and turned him into a setup guy.”
Hoffman, who will turn 28 in January, was the No. 9 overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft.