Cincinnati Reds: What Nick Senzel’s injury means moving forward

MIAMI, FL - JULY 09: Nick Senzel #13 of the Cincinnati Reds and the U.S. Team scores on an RBI double by Kyle Tucker #30 of the Houston Astros and the U.S. Team in the third inning against the World Team during the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at Marlins Park on July 9, 2017 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JULY 09: Nick Senzel #13 of the Cincinnati Reds and the U.S. Team scores on an RBI double by Kyle Tucker #30 of the Houston Astros and the U.S. Team in the third inning against the World Team during the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at Marlins Park on July 9, 2017 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Reds lost Nick Senzel, their top prospect, for the remainder of the season due to an injury. What does the injury mean for the Reds and Senzel moving forward?

Nick Senzel will not be called up to the big leagues this season. The Cincinnati Reds‘ top prospect will be sidelined for the remainder of the 2018 season with a torn tendon in his right index finger. Senzel was really coming into his own down at Triple-A Louisville and a call-up was all but assured by year’s end. What does the injury mean for the Reds and Senzel going forward?

Senzel was setting the International League on fire of late. Over his last 10 games, Senzel was hitting .400 with 16 hits, 3 home runs and 10 RBI’s. He had just recently returned to the Louisville Bats after a stint on the disabled list with a bout of vertigo.

Unfortunately, Senzel just couldn’t avoid the injury bug this year. He left the Bats’ game on Friday in the first inning after fielding a routine ground ball. It’s assumed he injured his finger during the throw the first base.

Jim Riggleman commented on the injury via Reds.com:

"“I don’t think it was a bad hop. I think he did it throwing.”"

What does the injury mean for the Reds?

So what does Senzel’s injury mean for the Cincinnati Reds going forward this season? Well, for starters, it means the Reds’ front office won’t have to field questions about when Senzel will be promoted to the Majors. Riggleman commented on that via Reds.com as well:

"“It was never anything specific, and I never talked to [Reds general manager] Nick [Krall] about when do we think he will be here or anything like that. Just hearing about his progress, you got a sense that he might be here before September and certainly in all likelihood in September, at least. I am not sure where that stands now.”"

Senzel definitely would have been a Septemeber call-up at the very least. Not to mention, if the Reds would have suffered an injury to an infielder or made a trade before the deadline, Senzel could’ve found his way to Cincinnati before September.

It also means that the pressure to trade Scooter Gennett in an effort to get Senzel moved up to the big leagues is no longer present.

Most Reds’ fans love Gennett and don’t want to see the second baseman traded away. However, with Senzel, the No. 6 overall minor league prospect, hitting the cover off the ball in Triple-A, it was becoming a story. Especially with Gennett’s contract situation and Eugenio Suarez being the everyday third baseman.

That does bring up an interesting question going into next season; provided Gennett is still on the squad and Senzel is healthy, will the Reds look to move one of the two into the outfield? We’ll have to wait until Spring Training to have that question answered.

What does the injury mean for Nick Senzel?

Senzel was on track to join the Reds this September, if not sooner. This injury to his right index finger is just another setback in what is likely a frustrating year for the 22-year.

After a bout with vertigo, Senzel returned to the Louisville Bats and was crushing opposing pitchers. Now, he’s got the finger injury. But, he appears to be taking it in stride. He commented via social media on his thoughts moving forward:

A lot could change for Senzel between now and Spring Training. He could be learning a new position, possibly left field, or he could be the starting second baseman for the Cincinnati Reds heading into the 2019 season. A lot of what’s ahead for Nick Senzel will depend greatly on how the Reds handle the next month with the non-waiver trade deadline approaching.

Regardless, though he appears to be disappointed, there’s no denying that Senzel has the drive to be great. We wish Nick a speedy recovery and can’t wait to see him playing in Great American Ball Park.