St. Louis Cardinals RHP Alex Reyes & OF Ben DeLuzio Not Tendered Contracts for 2023
The St. Louis Cardinals have announced that they are not tendering contracts to RHP Alex Reyes and OF Ben DeLuzio. Both are now free agents.
The Cardinals current 40-man roster now stands at 37.
Reyes, (28) was once a highly touted prospect in the Cardinals organization. He was signed by St. Louis as an amateur draft free agent in Dec. 2012, and made his MLB debut in Aug. 2016.
He left an impressive first impression at the big league level as he finished the season with a 4-1 record, 1.57 ERA and 52 strikeouts in just 48 innings.
Unfortunately in February of 2017, Reyes was diagnosed with a partial tear in his right elbow. He elected to have Tommy John surgery the following day which in turn forced him to miss the entire 2017 season.
The following season, Reyes began his rehab assignment at four different minor league levels for St. Louis. He was eventually activated at the end of May but after only 4 scoreless innings in a start vs the Milwaukee Brewers, was placed on the injured list with a right lat strain. A week later, Alex underwent surgery for a torn lat and was again done for the season.
The 2019 season wasn’t particularly kind to Reyes, as he only pitched 3 innings at the MLB level before being optioned to Memphis.
The Covid-shortened 2020 season saw Reyes get another chance, and in 19.2 innings of work, went 2-1 with a 3.20 ERA accumulating 27 strikeouts.
2021 was the year that Reyes finally started to break out as he was named the closer for the Cardinals heading into the season. He dominated the first half, by having a stellar 1.12 ERA with 20 saves in 20 opportunities over 40.1 innings which earned him his first All-Star nod. He went on to set the MLB record for 24 consecutive saves to begin a career. But after being lights out the first half, Reyes struggled the second half going 5-5 with a 5.52 ERA forcing the Cardinals to remove him from the closer role.
In a memory that he, and Cardinals fans everywhere would like to forget, Reyes would give up a two-out, two-run walk-off HR to Chris Taylor of the Dodgers in the 2021 NL Wildcard Game.
This past spring, Reyes again was sidelined, this time with shoulder discomfort which led him to have season-ending surgery. The timeline for his return was to be sometime this upcoming May.
As for Ben DeLuzio, he was selected by the Cardinals in the minor league phase of the 2021 Rule 5 Draft. After being assigned to Memphis to start the season, St. Louis purchased his contract last September where he made his MLB debut. He played 22 games for the Cardinals where he hit .150 in just 25 plate appearances.
Friday night is the deadline for MLB clubs to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players. RHP Giovanny Gallegos signed a multi-year extension at season’s end and RHP Chris Stratton signed a 1-year $2.8M contract yesterday.
Other arb-eligible players for St. Louis include: pitchers Jordan Montgomery, Jack Flaherty, Ryan Helsley, Jordan Hicks, Genesis Cabrera, and Dakota Hudson; outfielder Tyler O'Neill; infielder Tommy Edman; and catcher Andrew Knizner.