Cincinnati Reds have starting second baseman in Scooter Gennett

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Reds claimed their future second baseman off of waivers from the Milwaukee Brewers.

Scooter Gennett came to the Cincinnati Reds at the end of spring training.  The Reds had brought veterans Desmond Jennings and Ryan Raburn to battle for a bench spot.  When neither worked out the Reds claimed Gennett off of waivers from their National League Central rivals, the Milwaukee Brewers.

The thought was that he would provide a left-handed pinch hitter and a back-up to young second baseman Jose Peraza.  He also brought the flexibility to play third base, if needed.  By the All-Star break Gennett had effectively taken advantage of the situation, replacing Peraza as the everyday second baseman.

The Brewers thought that they were set with converted shortstop Jonathan Villar at second.  Ironically, the Brewers traded for Neil Walker to play second down the stretch.  Villar was ineffective and injured for most of the 2017 campaign.

It was an interesting move for the Brewers.  Gennett can play second and third.  In a pinch he can even play the corner outfield positions.

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With a .283 batting average and an OBP of .323 Gennett provided a decent offensive option for the Brewers.  Instead, they decided to go younger and cheaper.  It hurt the Brewers’ chances to make the playoffs and helped the Reds’ rebuild.

Scooter Gennett’s historic run for the Cincinnati Reds earned him the starting second baseman job for 2018.

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Gennett had one of the best offensive games in the history of MLB.  On June 7 Gennett became only the 17th player to hit four home runs in a single game.  It was a harbinger of things to come.

Gennett had the best season of his professional career.  He belted 27 home runs and drove in 97 batting up and down the line-up.  The Reds wanted to bat him near the bottom of the order, but his production and injuries forced him up higher in the line-up.

Gennett played a career high 141 games in 2017.

He also hit a career high 52 extra-base hits.  Combined that with his 136 base hits and it was a season for Gennett to remember.

Gennett ranked third in RBIs and fourth in home runs for the Reds in 2017.  He also ranked third in OPS among player that plays at least 100 MLB games this season.  Outfield prospect Jesse Winker also had a higher OPS, but he only played 47 MLB games in 2017.

Next: A look at the Reds first round draft options

There is no reason to go looking for a second baseman this off-season, but the Reds will take it one season at a time.  Gennett is a great match for at least one more season.  The Reds can use the extra time to focus on other issues, however, as there are plenty.