The Cincinnati Reds have signed catcher Luke Maile of Edgewood, Kentucky. The terms of the contract are one year and $1.75 million. The Reds will be the fifth Major League Baseball team Maile has played for following the Tampa Bay Rays (2015 and 2016), the Toronto Blue Jays (2017 to 2019), the Milwaukee Brewers (2021), and the Cleveland Guardians (2022). In 2020 Maile signed a one-year contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates. However, he did not play for Pittsburgh at all that season. That is because he got hit by a pitch in a preseason game and needed finger surgery.
In his one season with the Guardians, Maile had a batting average of .221 with three home runs and 17 runs batted in. In 76 games, 206 plate appearances, and 181 at bats, Maile scored 19 runs and had 40 hits, 10 doubles, 19 walks, 59 total bases, and three sacrifice flies.
Maile’s most memorable game with the Guardians came on August 7, 2022. That is when he hit a home run, and helped the Guardians record the only run of the game in a 1-0 Guardians win over the eventual World Series champions Houston Astros. Maile’s long bomb to left field led off the fifth inning and came off of Astros starting pitcher Cristian Javier. It was an excellent pitching performance by Guardians starting pitcher Tristan McKenzie of Brooklyn, New York. McKenzie threw eight shutout innings and only gave up two walks. Maile’s other home runs came in a 7-5 Guardians loss to the Detroit Tigers on August 15, and in an 11-4 Guardians win over the Minnesota Twins.
Backup to Tyler Stephenson
In 2023, Maile is expected to backup catcher Tyler Stephenson of Atlanta, Georgia. On July 22, 2022, Stephenson broke his clavicle on a foul ball from 2022 National League Most Valuable Player Paul Goldschmidt. At the time of the injury (which needed surgery), Stephenson was extremely productive offensively as he batted .319 in 50 games and 166 at bats.