Reds news: Utility infielder Josh VanMeter recalled

PHOENIX, ARIZONA - SEPTEMBER 15: Josh VanMeter #17 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, ARIZONA - SEPTEMBER 15: Josh VanMeter #17 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /

Josh VanMeter is back and will add some depth to the Reds infield.

Perhaps Josh VanMeter will figure things out during his second go-round. The Cincinnati Reds utility infielder was recalled from the alternate site and right-handed reliever Pedro Strop was placed on the 10-day injured list with a strained right groin. Strop’s transaction was retroactive to Saturday.

VanMeter exploded onto thee scene last spring after a ridiculous start to thee season at Triple-A Louisville. Along with fellow bash brothers Aristides Aquino and Brian O’Grady, VanMeter helped lead the Louisville Bats offense during the first month of the season and earned a call-up to the big leagues.

The Indiana native made his major league debut on May 5th, collected his first big league hit on May 8th and was sent back to Triple-A Louisville after playing 28 games with the Cincinnati Reds. During his first stint with club, VanMeter hit just .220/.347/.268, didn’t record a home run and had just three RBIs in 49 plate appearances.

Josh VanMeter was recalled by the Reds on July 6, 2019 and proved himself worthy of being called a major leaguer. VanMeter hit .241/.322/.439 with eight homers and 20 RBIs over his final 67 games. The left-handed hitting slugger increased his OPS by 146 points. David Bell and the Cincinnati coaching staff is hoping for a similar result in VanMeter’s second go of it this season.

The 2020 season has not been kind to VanMeter. the 25-year-old has yet to record a hit and has been on base twice via base on balls. He’s also been hit by a pitch and his on-base percentage currently sits at a paltry .176.

Before the offseason acquisitions of Nick Castellanos, Shogo Akiyama and Mike Moustakas, VanMeter was thought to have had a good shot to be a regular in the starting lineup, whether at second base or left field.

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Look for Josh VanMeter to garner some time playing second base while Moustakas is on the injured list. Expect Bell to play VanMeter against right-handed pitchers, preferring to play either Kyle Farmer or Christian Colón versus southpaws.