Connect with us

Cincinnati Reds

Some Thoughts On The 25-Man Roster

Sean Young

Published

on

The Reds made some key roster moves over the weekend and the 25-man roster is starting to come into focus. Players on the fringe like Phil Gosselin, Phillip Ervin, Cliff Pennington, Amir Garrett, and Kevin Quackenbush were all told they are making the major league roster. Here is my take on how things are shaking out:

The Starters (8)

C Tucker Barnhart, 1B Joey Votto, 2B Scooter Gennett, 3B Eugenio Suarez, SS Jose Peraza, LF Adam Duvall, CF Billy Hamilton, RF Scott Schebler

There really aren’t any surprises as to who the everyday starters will be to start the season. I expect that Jesse Winker will eventually take one of the starting spots in the outfield from either Duvall or Schebler. I am interested to see how long the Reds are willing to go with Peraza at short if he struggles.

He is still relatively young, but the club does have other options in Nick Senzel and Alex Blandino that can come up and replace him if necessary. I think I am most excited to see Tucker Barnhart build upon the gold glove year he had last year.

It really helps the rebuild when a player such as Barnhart, who wasn’t expected to be a key part of this team when the rebuild began, becomes an everyday starter and someone you can really rely on.

The Bench (5)

C Devin Mesoraco, SS Cliff Pennington, OF Phillip Ervin, IF/OF Phil Gosselin, and OF Jesse Winker

I considered Winker a bench player because I think the Reds will give Scott Schebler and Adam Duvall the chance to prove they should start before they add Winker to the everyday lineup. I am a little surprised that the Reds went with both Phil Gosselin and Cliff Pennington. Both can play the infield and both need added to the 40 man roster.

I was expecting them to go with either Brandon Dixon- who has had an outstanding spring and can play both the infield and corner outfield spots, or Alex Blandino- who has a solid bat and can play all over the infield. I’m also somewhat surprised to see Ervin make the team over Ben Revere. I was certain that Brian Price would go with Revere as the fifth outfielder due to his infatuation with veteran players.

What I really like to see is that the Reds aren’t carrying a third catcher. Price flirted with the idea of adding catcher Tony Cruz to the 25 man roster as recently as this past weekend, but ultimately decided against it.

The Rotation (4)

Homer Bailey, Luis Castillo, Tyler Mahle, Sal Romano

The Reds are only going with four starting pitchers to start the season due to not needing a fifth starter until April 9th or 10th. This will be another year where the rotation will be very fluid. By the end of the season we will most likely see Anthony Desclifani, Brandon Finnegan, Robert Stephenson, Cody Reed, Jackson Stephens, and Amir Garrett all make starts.

I also bet that at some point this season Jose Lopez makes the jump from AA to the big leagues – much like what Tyler Mahle and Luis Castillo did last year. I really hope that this is the last year that we see 10+ starting pitchers in one season.

If the same amount of pitchers are making starts next year it tells me that no one has asserted themselves into the rotation for good and the rebuild is not going as well as planned.

The Bullpen (8)

Raisel Iglesias, Jared Hughes, Kevin Quackenbush, Amir Garrett,

The four listed have already been told that they are making it. That leaves four more spots up for grabs. David Hernandez and Kevin Shackleford should make it, but both have minor injuries that might keep them out. Michael Lorenzen will start the year on the DL but will be added when healthy.

If Shackleford and Hernandez are healthy enough to start then the final two spots come down to Vance Worley, Zack Weiss, Austin Brice,and recently claimed Justin Nicolino. Justin Nicolino will have to be put back on waivers if he doesn’t make the bullpen. The Reds will only go with seven bullpen arms once the fifth starter is needed so someone will be sent back down soon after the season starts.

Much like the starting rotation, the bullpen will have a lot of turnover. I would like to see some of the younger players become a mainstay in the pen for the next competitive Reds team. I am specifically interested to see what starters become permanent relief pitchers.

It would be intersting to see if some of the younger starters can have success in the bullpen if they don’t claim a permanent spot in the rotation.

There are still a few days until Opening Day and the Reds still have time to claim a player from another team.

Ultimately, this needs to be the last year where we try and figure out what we have. 2018 should be a sink or swim year for a lot of different players. 2019 should be about awarding the effective players with everyday playing time, and filling holes in the roster with players outside the organization.

I am a lifelong Reds fan that grew up in St. Bernard. Currently live in Campbell County with my wife and two sons. My all time favorite player is Barry Larkin. I’m an Air Force veteran that served one tour in the Middle East. My Twitter handle is @syoung927.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Cincinnati Reds

Reds Rule 5 Players and Predictions

We are coming up on the deadline for MLB teams to protect players from the Rule 5 Draft. Here are some players the Reds need to make some tough decisions on.

Clay Snowden

Published

on

MLB teams have until November 20th to make their decision on the players eligible for the Rule 5 draft. They must decide to “protect” (add to the 40 man roster) to avoid another team selecting a player in the draft. I want to go over the list and make predictions on if the player will be protected or not.

Riley O’Brien RHP

O’Brien was acquired from Tampa Bay in the Cody Reed trade. A late bloomer of sorts, the 6’4” righty has a nice fastball. Being 25, he’s ready to battle for a spot in the pen right now. There isn’t great bullpen depth on the 40 man roster right now, so I can see O’Brien replacing a spot that players such as Romano/Alaniz/De Leon held in 2020. Prediction: Protected

Vladimir Gutierrez RHP

The former top 10 organizational prospect has been trending in the wrong direction. The beginning of 2019 was tough in AAA for Vlad but he finished the year strong. A suspension plus the lack of a 2020 minor league season makes it difficult to see how he is doing. However, he has enough raw talent to keep him on the roster. Prediction: Protected

Jacob Heatherly LHP

Checking in at #18 on the Reds prospect list, Heatherly is the only lefty on the list. We know the Reds will likely bring in lefty competition for the LHP bullpen spot next to Amir. Coming off an injury, I would bet he would not get drafted. Prediction: Not Protected

Alfredo Rodriguez SS

It feels like Alfredo has been in the Reds system forever. A 2016 pricey Cuban SS, Rodriguez was brought in due to his glove in hopes that the bat would come around. Long story short, it hasn’t. He’s now 26 and a change of scenery might be the best for him. I doubt he will get picked, though. Prediction: Not Protected

TJ Friedl OF

Friedl was exposed last year in the draft and not selected. He is a plus fielder and runner, but most other parts of his game are underwhelming. Prediction: Not Protected

Joel Kuhnel RHP

Most of us have a pretty good idea of what Kuhnel is. He has a fastball that is VERY good. I have always liked Kuhnel and wanted to see him get a longer look. There were plenty of opportunities for him to get a shot and more often than not he was overlooked. This one is hard for me, but I think him not getting more chances shows what the Reds think of him. Prediction: Not Protected

Mariel Bautista OF

Bautista has been with the Reds since 2014. I really do not think he is anything too special in terms of a prospect. He also doesn’t do any one thing so well that a team would select him off of that one skill. Prediction: Not Protected

Jared Solomon RHP

To be honest, I do not know much about Solomon. So I reached out to someone much smarter than me, our #RedsTwitter friend @RedsFan_Brandon . He predicted him to be protected. Boddy has been high on him and his fastball has improved. So I will stick with that. Prediction: Protected

None of these players are top 15 Reds prospects by most list. So losing any of them shouldn’t be the end of the world. Last year the Reds selected Mark Payton. Conor Joe was selected the year before.

Continue Reading

Cincinnati Reds

Non-Tender Candidates

Should the Reds look to be active in the free agent market they’re most likely going to have to cut payroll, first. Let’s start with some player who could get non-tendered before the December 2nd deadline.

Jeff

Published

on

By

This offseason…stop me if you’ve heard this…is going to be weird. Budgets will be unpredictable, although most believe spending will be at a minimum, and the Reds already have a lot of contracts that are set. Further additions and movement in the free agent market most likely will be preceded by some surprise cuts.

Based on the players leaving and the estimated totals of arbitration contracts, spotrac.com has the Reds at just over $126 million in payroll for 2021. They totaled out at a smidge over $144 million last year (if the season was to be as normal) with all of the transactions considered. The Reds could try to get back to that number, but the most likely scenario is that they hover around the $125-$130 million mark.

With the idea of making one or two moves to improve one of the worst lineups in baseball, let’s look at three candidates for being non-tendered. 

(Just an FYI, only non-tender candidates are capable of being cut and their salary taken off the books. All other MLB contracts are guaranteed.)

Brian Goodwin

As a fan, this one would hurt. He was a guy I watched with the Angels thinking if he were given everyday playing time, he would flourish. If I’m being objectively honest (and if I want the Reds to run similarly to the Rays) non-tendering him would make sense. He’s an athletically gifted outfielder who has a little bit of pop in his bat. In fact, he’s pretty much Phillip Ervin. The problem is, he figures to be a rotational outfield player, assuming everyone is healthy.

According to Spotrac, he will make around $3.2 million next year, or possibly the sixth highest dollar amount of Reds position players. That’s more than Jesse Winker’s possible $2.7 million and I think we can all agree that Jesse needs to be in the everyday lineup. Ik now he just got here from LA, but the dude was bit by whatever bug bit the Reds bats and slashed .163/.236/.327 in 20 games as a Red. Small sample size, sure, but am I counting on him to be light years better than that in what may not figure to be much more playing time? No.

Archie Bradley

This one I am less sure of being a good idea, but I am rolling with this whole “be more like Tampa” idea. The Rays, per Spotrac, aren’t estimated to give ANY of their relievers more than $2.5 million next year. The Reds are slated to give three relievers over $4 million.

I am not advocating a non-tender for Michael Lorenzen because of his versatility and potential for being the fifth starter in 2021. Barring a trade, the Reds are paying $9.125 million to Raisel Iglesias to get the last out of a game. They’re really going to pay Archie Bradley, who it felt as though David Bell didn’t trust as much as Nate Jones at times, $5 million to be a setup man? 

Robert Stephenson

Okay, this one really isn’t that surprising. It is time. We once regarded him as the Reds top prospect. We once regarded him as a future ace. We once proclaimed he reborn as a shutdown reliever. We now have no clue what to expect from him and it just does not make sense to continue to trot him out there expecting the complete career turnaround that we’ve all been hoping for since the “rebuild” began.

It won’t really save the Reds a ton of money, but freeing up BobSteve’s roster spot will open up an opportunity for one of the up-and-coming prospects or another Derek Johnson reclamation project. Frankly, I’d rather see any of those than BobSteve coming out of the Reds bullpen in 2021.

Continue Reading

Cincinnati Reds

Mailbag: Senzel, Winker, Votto, and More

Time for an offseason mailbag to get your focus on what the Reds need to do th be better for 2021

Clay Snowden

Published

on

It’s been a while and we have all had a chance to process that Reds playoff performance. Yuck. However, it is time for offseason talk. Let’s get into the mailbag.

 

What are the Reds going to do at catcher? The Reds and pitchers seem to like Casali and Barnhart behind plate..

The Reds once again went with the duo of Casali and Tucker behind the plate in 2020. The results were underwhelming, but not miserable. Tucker is a finalist for a gold glove while hitting .204/.291/.388 and an OPS+ of 77. Casali hit .224/.366/.500 with an OPS+ of 126. However, we all want to see the exciting prospect, Tyler Stephenson, take his reign of the position. I expect exactly that next season. Having a veteran backing him up is important so I’d imagine Tucker plays that role as he is under contract while Casali will enter arbitration.

In terms of how the pitchers like Casali and Tucker, I think that just comes with time. I am sure once the pitchers get to work with Stephenson more, they will learn to pitch well to him.

 

If there is a DH in 2021, shouldn’t #19 fill that role and let Da Wink and (place RH bat here) platoon at 1st?

The only thing the Reds have now is time (between now, and next season). So, what is their excuse for not putting Senzel at 2B, and give him regular ABs? (This makes Votto the DH, and Moose 1B)

What’s the odds of moving Senzel to 2nd, Moose to 1st and Votto to DH.

Well this is my intake everybody has one with the Outfield I guess we’re not going to have a DH going forward so Jesse Winker needs to be traded along with Nick Senzel I definitely keep Shogo, and hopefully we can keep Castellanos and let’s go try to get a productive outfielder

 

I want to clump all these together because it’s pretty much all the same gist.  So, let’s breakdown what it could look like with and then without the DH.

WITH: Votto to DH, Moose to first, Senzel STAYS in center, second is open to add speed/OBP.

Explanation: Votto’s defense is terrible. His contract isn’t going anywhere, so put him at DH. He still has something left with the bat. When Moose signed he wasn’t signing on to play second for the duration of that contract. No way. Move him to first and the defense at first likely improves. Keep Senzel in Center. Injuries and swing changes have stunted the development of Senzel enough. Asking him to change back to second after 2 years of focusing on becoming a CF just feels like something they will not do. He hasn’t done any work (that we know of ) at second since he moved to CF.

Now for 2B. Bringing back the same team that barely sneaked into an expanded playoff (while maybe losing Bauer) seems like a bad idea. Changes have to be made. The Reds added plenty of HR power last offseason, now add a 2B that might be a better OBP guy. Speed and better baserunning would be welcomed as well. In theory, this could increase the defensive ability at second as well.

WITHOUT: Votto at first (with plenty of days off), Moose at 2B, Senzel in CF, Winker traded.

Explanation: Votto really doesn’t have anywhere else to go besides the bench. There is not an option at this point, when they play him he will be at first. Which leaves Moose at second. Again, not a thrilling defensive side of the infield, but Moose held his own at second but as he gets older his range will continue to drop. Senzel in CF for the same reason’s I listed above. Winker is traded. In this scenario, I am still looking to shake up the team from 2020. ( I am also assuming Castellanos is returning) An OF with Winker and Castellanos fielding would be far less than ideal. I really like Winker, but Shogo could be ready for a bigger role. Winker has trade value and could strengthen the team in other areas by moving him. If the Reds make a big trade like many fans are hoping for, they will have to move MLB talent. They do not have enough top-end prospects to trade. If they do move the top prospects, they will deplete their farm system because it lacks depth. Remember, to acquire top-end talent you have to trade high value. Prospects out of the top 5 usually aren’t considered too high by many other organizations. 

 

Goldstar or Skyline and Cut or Twirl

I have never even had Goldstar. No need to. Skyline fills my needs. Twirl

Continue Reading

Trending