3. The Reds trade Aristides Aquino to the Nationals for pitching.
The Washington Nationals, one year removed from the World Series title, finished dead-last in the National League East last season. However, the Nats were rattled by injuries to some of their best players, in addition to the loss of All-Star third baseman Anthony Rendon. The Nationals could use some outfield depth, something the Reds have plenty of. Might the two teams make a deal?
The Cincinnati Reds have the exact same problem entering the 2021 season that they had at this time last time last year; too many outfielders. Thank goodness, the universal DH was implemented last season. Otherwise, who knows how the Cincinnati outfield may have looked. The addition of the DH allowed Jesse Winker to swing the bat while not playing the outfield.
The Reds regularly sent Shogo Akiyama and Nick Castellanos into the field along with Nick Senzel when the former first-round pick was healthy. One would think the same alignment would be in place this coming season, but if David Bell is going to get Winker’s bat into the lineup, he’ll have to have a four-man outfield rotation. As of right now, there’ll be no designated hitter in the NL.
Cincinnati has already moved on from Brian Goodwin after the club non-tendered the 30-year-old earlier this winter. The Reds still have plenty of outfielders on the team’s 40-man roster, and Aristides Aquino could be a casualty. Aquino, who burst onto the scene in August of 2019, hasn’t lived up to the hype after receiving the Player of the Month Award following his breakout performance.
The Reds are in the market for pitching depth, and the Nationals farm system is littered with talented arms. Pitchers like Joan Adon and Ben Braymer may be had for the right price. With Adam Eaton headed to Chicago and Howie Kendrick calling it a career, the Nats could use another heavy-hitter in their lineup. The Punisher needs regular at-bats, and he’s unlikely to find that in Cincinnati.