Cincinnati Reds: Predicting the 30-man roster to begin 2020 season

GOODYEAR, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 23: Shogo Akiyama #4 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
GOODYEAR, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 23: Shogo Akiyama #4 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Reds
GOODYEAR, ARIZONA – FEBRUARY 24: Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /

Reds starting lineup (9)

Joey Votto (1B), Mike Moustakas (2B), Freddy Galvis (SS), Eugenio Suárez (3B), Tucker Barnhart (C), Nick Castellanos (RF), Nick Senzel (CF), Shogo Akiyama (LF), Jesse Winker (DH)

Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell will likely employ the same strategy he used in 2019, so expect a few players to move in and out of the starting lineup, but a core group of at least six players should be expected to take the field every day; Votto, Moustakas, Galvis, Suárez, Castellanos and Akiyama.

The added roster spots and implantation of a universal designated hitter will greatly help the Reds field situation, which was contentious among fans back in March. Castellanos and Akiyama will be regulars in the Reds lineup, and Senzel will find plenty of at-bats as well. Bell is likely to rotate between Ervin and Winker based on pitching matchups.

Somedays it’s easy to Winker in the DH role, while other days we see Castellanos or even Votto. There’s a scenario where Moustakas may see some time at DH as well, giving way to the likes of Alex Blandino or Kyle Farmer, who arguably have a better glove at second base.

The biggest plus for this group is health. The coronavirus pandemic shut down spring training just days before Eugenio Suárez was set to debut. Though we never Geno take an at-bat or Senzel play the field, both are said to be ready to go once summer camp gets underway. Senzel may see some time in the infield as well, or just be given the day off in favor of Akiyama playing center field.