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11/20/08 8:55 PM EST

Reds add four hurlers to 40-man roster

Infielder Phillips becomes free agent; lefty Pelland outrighted

CINCINNATI -- The Reds added pitchers Matt Maloney, Carlos Fisher, Robert Manuel and Sam Lecure to their 40-man roster on Thursday.

Infielder Andy Phillips refused an outright assignment and elected to become a free agent. Lefty pitcher Tyler Pelland was outrighted off the roster.

The transactions protected the four added players from being exposed to the Rule 5 Draft. The Reds' roster stands at 37 players, three short of the 40-man limit.

"We wanted to have flexibility in case we re-signed [David] Weathers, [Mike] Lincoln or [Jerry] Hairston Jr.," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said.

It also gives the Reds space to add players in the Rule 5 Draft, which will be held during the Winter Meetings next month.

In 25 starts for Triple-A Louisville, the left-handed Maloney was 11-5 with a 4.68 ERA. A right-handed reliever, Manuel posted a combined 6-3 record a 1.25 ERA in 52 games with Class A Sarasota, Double-A Chattanooga and Triple-A Louisville. Most of his games were with Chattanooga, and he also pitched in the Arizona Fall League.

Fisher, who also pitched in the AFL, was 6-5 with a 3.04 ERA and eight saves over 50 relief appearances at Chattanooga and Louisville. Lecure was 9-7 with a 3.42 ERA in 27 starts with Chattanooga.

In 56 big league games this season that included a brief four-game stint with the Mets, Phillips batted .231 with three homers and 10 RBIs.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.