The Cincinnati Reds have signed outfielder Ender Inciarte to a minor league contract and assigned him to Triple-A Louisville. The 3-time gold glove award winning center fielder was released by the Atlanta Braves on July 29th.
A solid singles hitter in the first five seasons of his career, Ender Inciarte hit .289/.337/.390 in 694 games from 2014-2018. But in 2019 his ability to hit for average fell off, and then in 2020 and 2021 any remaining power he had shown also disappeared. Since 2020 began he’s hit .200/.267/.277 in 98 games – all with the Braves.
On a minor league deal the Reds have depth in Triple-A that will bring defense to the outfield if they happen to need it at some point this season. Currently the big league team has plenty of outfielders now that Nick Castellanos is back off of the injured list. And things will be getting a bit more crowded when Nick Senzel returns, too – he’s currently playing in his 4th rehab game with the Louisville Bats after having knee surgery.
But if there’s one thing we’ve seen this past year in sports it’s that a lot of guys are winding up injured and having too much depth is not at all a thing. The Reds added something that they may need at some point down the stretch. If not, great. But it’s better to have something and not need it than need something and not have it.
The Reds land three in ESPN’s Top 50 Prospects List
Speaking of the minor leagues, the Cincinnati Reds have three prospects in ESPN’s midseason Top 50 Prospect list. Pitchers Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo are both inside the top 25, with Greene being the 3rd rated pitcher overall and Lodolo being the top left-handed pitcher on the list. Shortstop Jose Barrero finds himself at #40 on the list from former MLB scout and front office member Kiley McDaniel.