Cincinnati Reds positional preview vs. NL Central: left field

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Cincinnati Reds

Jesse Winker of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

Jesse Winker has finished the past two seasons on the injured list, but the 26-year-old is expected to be the starter in left field for the Cincinnati Reds.

When the 2020 season begins, by all accounts, Jesse Winker is likely to be the starting left fielder for the Cincinnati Reds. Winker, a former first-round pick, has had an up-and-down start to his major league career. The 26-year-old shows tremendous promise, but lacks the ability to stay on the field. How does Winker stack up against his fellow left fielders in the NL Central?

Winker has not had the type of start to his big league career that Reds Country had hoped. Taken with the 49th pick in the 2012 MLD Draft, Winker made his major league debut in 2017. A turbulent season in 2018 found Winker as part of an outfield platoon with him on the outside looking in.

Some solid play during June of 2018 got Winker more playing time, but an injured shoulder shelved the then-25-year-old for the remainder of the season. Jesse Winker got off to a horrendous start last season, but salvaged a slash line of .269/.357/.473 with 16 home runs and an OPS of .830.

Looking around the division, the left field spot is one that’s hard to rank. The Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals are likely to run out second-year players in 2020, while the Chicago Cubs left fielder slugged .531 last season. Oh yeah, and the Milwaukee Brewers best player will likely suit up in left field this coming season. So, let’s see what the NL Central looks like in terms of left field talent.

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