The Reds need a bounce-back performance from some of their top players.
With the Cincinnati Reds slashing payroll, fans can give up on the idea of a high-profile free agent signing on to play in the Queen City. Instead, the Reds must rely upon those players who had a down year in 2020, and hope they have a bounce-back performance during the 2021 season. Who are the three most likely players to rebound from a sub-par 2020 season?
When it comes to players on the Cincinnati roster who failed to meet expectations in 2020, the list can get very long very quickly. Though it’s unlikely you’ll find anyone from the starting rotation on that list, right? The likes of Trevor Bauer, Luis Castillo, and Sonny Gray helped take the Reds back to the playoffs for the first time since 2013.
However, the offense, which never got on track, was the downfall of last year’s team. Only one player from the list of Cincinnati regulars, designated hitter Jesse Winker, hit above .250 for the season. Tucker Barnhart (.206) barley eclipsed the Mendoza line and newcomers Nick Castellanos and Mike Moustakas failed to make the impact at the dish most fans were expecting to see.
Joey Votto continued his downward trend, hitting just .226 in the abbreviated 2020 season and also earning a spot on the Cincinnati bench for stretch. While an offensive-minded shortstop may find his way onto the 2021 roster, one player isn’t going to be the difference between the Cincinnati Reds being a contender or a pretender. So, who is most likely to bounce back in 2021?