We continue looking at the 30 MLB teams as they head into the 2021 season. And on this piece, we examine The State of the Cincinnati Reds.
Trading Raisel Iglesias
The Cincinnati Reds started the offseason in an interesting way. They would begin by trading away Raisel Iglesias. In most cases, trading away your closer signals that you are going into rebuilding mode and you want to capitalize on your current assets. However, in the case of the Cincinnati Reds, trading away Iglesias was mostly about money. How the Reds will pivot from Raisel will likely be determined in Spring Training. But having a more proven closer will help them in their quest for the postseason.
Sean Doolittle Signing
And because they traded away a closer, they signed another in Sean Doolittle. Doolittle has dealt with injuries over the past few seasons but has been one of the best relievers when healthy. If Cincinnati is going to find success, they will need to lock down any potential wins, and Doolittle can be that lockdown closer.
Plethora of Minor League Signings
The Cincinnati Reds would make a lot of Minor League signings in an effort to fill out their 26-man roster in 2021. Many teams look to bring bin veterans into camp to see what’s left in the tank. And if any truly impress, they make the ball club. For the Reds, this is simply doing their due diligence. Having depth is extremely important to a club trying to make it back to the postseason.
State of the Rotation
When it comes to the state of the Reds’ rotation, there are names to be excited about in 2021. Primary among them is Luis Castillo. Castillo is a dynamic right-hander who’s going to be one of the best pitchers in Major League Baseball as early as this season. For Cincinnati to find success, it must come with the strength of its pitching. Cincinnati will face a bit of hardship right out of the gate, with Sonny Gray likely starting the season on the injured list. But his return will likely bring a newfound depth to the Reds’ rotation.
State of the Bullpen
As previously stated, the strength of the Reds relies on their pitching. However, it’s not just the rotation; the bullpen will be a major factor as well. Many of the top relievers in the Cincinnati bullpen will be household names to hardcore baseball fans. Pitchers like Amit Garrett, the aforementioned Sean Doolittle, and Michael Lorenzen, just to name a few. The entire pitching staff for the Reds will be called upon for Cincinnati to succeed in 2021.
State of the Offense
When it comes to the offense to the Cincinnati Reds, they have some high-quality bats. Players like Joey Votto, Eugenio Suarez, and Nick Castellanos are among a premium class of hitters in the Major Leagues. Casual baseball fans may not understand the students of the game that are those three players. However, Votto, Suarez, and Castellanos are among a disciplined elite for those that understand the game.
How the Reds’ offense performs will be predicated on the success of these players. As well as getting breakout years from Nick Senzel, Jesse Winker, and others. If the Reds can get standout seasons from their talented vets and their next wave of superstars, Cincinnati has a good shot of making the postseason in 2021.
State of the Franchise
How the Cincinnati Reds fair in 2021 will be based on their pitching staff’s success and timely hitting. For many teams, this is the mantra of success. However, the Reds find themselves in a tough and highly contested division in the National League Central. For Cincy to achieve their ultimate goal of heading back to the postseason and the World Series, they will need strong seasons across the board. All aspects of the team will need to push towards excellence in 2021. If they can achieve those levels, the Cincinnati Reds could make it back to the postseason.