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Reds place Homer Bailey on 60-day disabled list

Reds starter Homer Bailey was placed on the 60-day disabled list, but hopes to avoid surgery on his injured right elbow.

Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey was placed on the 60-day disabled list with a right elbow ligament strain, the team announced Wednesday.

The 28-year-old was just returning from surgery on a torn flexor mass tendon last year. Because of rehab, Bailey was forced to miss a couple of starts to open the 2015 campaign. In two starts this season, Bailey pitched 11 and 1/3 innings, allowing seven runs with only three strikeouts.

A former 200 inning workhorse in 2012 and 2013, Bailey earned a six year, $105 million contract for his efforts.

There is a possibility that Bailey can avoid surgery for his injured elbow, with a platelet-rich plasma injection.

One of the options for treating Homer Bailey's sprained elbow ligament involves PRP (platelet-rich plasma) injections.

Reds manager Bryan Price mentioned it as a possibility Tuesday.

Carlos Contreras, the player called up to take Bailey's roster spot, avoided "Tommy John" surgery in 2010 with rest and PRP.

"The PRP really helped," he said. "It felt way better. I had it in the middle of 2010. They were talking about surgery. They said try the PRP and see how it goes.

All signs point to Bailey being lost for the season. The Reds have called up Carlos Contreas to replace Bailey on the roster. With the Cardinals, Cubs and Pirates all getting better, the Reds don't have time to sit around a wait for Bailey to get healthy. They have two potential options.

They can go out and acquire a mid-level or high level starter like Cole Hamels to make a push or they can commit to a rebuild with one of their better pitchers lost for the year. The latter option would mean trading Johnny Cueto now to get something back for him and building for the future, when Bailey is healthy.

Either way, the Reds are a very tough spot. Their next move could shape where the franchise goes from here.