Josh VanMeter earned his call up earlier this season. Is it time for the Cincinnati Reds to give Brian O’Grady his first shot in the major leagues?
Going into the 2019 season, many Cincinnati Reds fans expected the debut of star prospect Nick Senzel. However, many can’t say that they expected the debut of Josh VanMeter. Like VanMeter, Brian O’Grady is making a name for himself at Triple A-Louisville and is close to earning himself a promotion to the major leagues.
Brian O’Grady, the 27-year-old former 8th round draft pick, was taken out of Rutgers University. Former Reds Todd Frazier and Patrick Kivlehan were also part of the Scrlet Knights’ baseball squad. O’Grady has seen time all over the field, playing left, center, and right field, as well as first and third base.
Throughout his minor league career, O’Grady has hit .250 with a .357 on-base percentage. O’Grady has only homered 60 times throughout his time in the Cincinnati Reds’ farm system with 14 of those coming last season while splitting time between Double-A Pensacola and Triple A Louisville. These numbers aren’t bad, but they just don’t really pop off the page either.
Unlike Jose Siri‘s hitting streak from a couple of years ago or Ibandel Isabel‘s power numbers from last season, O’Grady’s stat line is not going to dazzle anybody. However, it’s not that O’Grady hasn’t performed. His numbers are solid, just not flashy.
Brian O’Grady, just like Josh VanMeter, has had a great season offensively this year at Triple-A Louisville and is now starting to get the attention of many Reds fans. Plus, the offensive struggles of the Cincinnati Reds have many fans constantly looking for players that are producing in the minor leagues.
Under the circumstances, many fans have started to clamor for Brian O’Grady to be the next position player to make his major league debut. And why not? O’Grady has produced amazing numbers this season. As of May 25th, O’Grady has hit .315 with 12 home runs, and a .403 on-base percentage.
O’Grady has not just produced this season either. In his brief 42 game stint with the Louisville Bats last season, O’Grady hit for a .306 with 8 home runs and had a .365 on-base percentage. So, as a whole, Brian O’Grady has performed quite well in his time at the Triple-A level.
Brian O’Grady’s numbers at lower-levels during his minor league career were not as productive as his time at Triple-A. O’Grady was a .229 hitter with a .348 on-base percentage in Single-A and Advanced-A ball. He was a .213 hitter with a .331 on-base percentage in Double-A.
Now, O’Grady has only played 79 games at the Triple-A level while he has played 100-plus games at the other two levels during his time in the Reds’ farm system. Whatever has changed, be it his approach at the plate, a better understanding of the strike zone, or whatever, O’Grady is enjoying a fantastic season he is very deserving of a call up to the Cincinnati Reds.
Brian O’Grady is currently not on the Reds’ 40-man roster. Josh VanMeter wasn’t either before he was called up earlier this month, so that shouldn’t be an issue. If you perform and there is a need at the major league level, the organization will find a way to get you on the 40-man roster.
However, at this point in time, there isn’t a logical spot for Brian O’Grady on the Cincinnati Reds. This could change due to injuries or if there is a need for a left-handed upgrade off the bench. O’Grady, like a lot of the Reds’ bench, offers a ton of versatility.
Brian O’Grady deserves the chance to be the next position player to make his major league debut this season. He has performed at Triple A this season. He may not be one of the most well known prospect or even a top 30 prospect in the Reds organization according to MLB Pipeline, but he has put the team and their fans on notice that he deserves a chance to play in the majors.