Cincinnati Reds focus on internal assessment this off-season

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Reds need to focus on how to allocate their current players

As the Cincinnati Reds wrap up this rebuild, they need to focus on how they want to use their current players and not on adding or subtracting.  Sometimes, doing nothing is more than doing something.  This is one of those cases.

Fans will call out for signing free agent pitching.  There is little need.  The Reds have ten pitchers on their forty man roster that possess enough talent to stay in an MLB rotation.  The Reds just need to find five that will stay healthy and productive all season.

The bullpen is the same.  The back-end is solved and the front-end has plenty of options.  The issue with the front-end is that many of those pitchers want to claim a space in the starting rotation.

Regarding the position players, shortstop is the big question.  The Reds have to decide how much Zack Cozart is worth to the team.  While they existed fine for stretches without him in 2017, there is a good chance that they don’t feel comfortable with the internal replacement options just yet.

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The outfield is the opposite issue.  With Adam Duvall, Billy Hamilton, Jesse Winker, Phillip Ervin, and Scott Schebler the Reds have five starting quality outfielders.  The Reds have to decide if they are in the future plans.

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Once they have assessed what they have, the Cincinnati Reds need to make some moves.

The Reds are more likely in a position to move players away from Cincinnati than they will need to bring players to the team.  With so many young players the Reds need to have enough space for opportunity for those players that are in the long range plans.  The moves will clear the roster of those players that are not in the plans.

Fans may not want to hear it, but that may mean bringing in a few more prospects.  Until the Reds can compete, they need to continue to stockpile players too young to require a spot on the forty man roster.  That is how a small market team competes.

Thankfully, the Reds have already begun this assessment.  It began by outrighting four pitchers to Louisville and off of the forty man roster in October.  They lost the historic Luke Farrell to the Chicago Cubs, but that is bound to happen as the team gets better.

Next: A look at free agent pitching targets for the Reds

Over the next few months, this assessment must continue.  Last off-season, this assessment results in the signing of Scott Feldman and the drafting of Stuart Turner.  This off-season the biggest result will be who leaves instead of who the Reds add.