Cincinnati Reds: Jonathan India should be optioned to Triple-A Louisville

CINCINNATI, OHIO - APRIL 22: Jonathan India #6 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates after hitting a home run. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - APRIL 22: Jonathan India #6 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrates after hitting a home run. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

Reds fans were ecstatic when Jonathan India was selected to be the team’s Opening Day starter at second base. However, Joey Votto’s injury and Tyler Naquin’s hot hitting has forced David Bell to sit India in favor of Nick Senzel. If the Cincinnati Reds are not able to find a prominent role for India, then the club should option him to Triple-A Louisville.

Don’t view it as punishment, but rather an opportunity for India to get more playing time. In 76 at-bats, the former first-round pick is slashing .211/.308/.316. The rookie has just one hit in his last 21 plate appearances.

Reds infielder Jonathan India would get more playing time at Triple-A Louisville.

Jonathan India has a future in the major leagues, but it’s just not right now. The 24-year-old turned heads in his first 10 games, slashing .353/.400/.441 with 12 hits and 11 RBIs. India was the talk of the town as recently as one month ago.

However, the following 15 games did not produce the same results. India is hitting just .095/.235/.214 with 16 punch outs and only six walks. The rookie seems to have hit a wall, and the best way to get him back on track is to give him more at-bats.

With Shogo Akiyama returning from injury last weekend, Reds manager David Bell made the decision to rely on former infielder turned outfielder Nick Senzel to be his starting second baseman. The results have been very good, both defensively and at the plate.

Senzel was playing the keystone during Wade Miley’s perfect game last Friday and has started the last three games at second base. Senzel has also assumed the role of leadoff hitter, and has been reaching base at a .419 clip over his last seven games.

The Reds can always recall Jonathan India later in the season.

With the alternate site a thing of the past and minor league baseball underway, Jonathan India could be optioned to Triple-A Louisville and be the starting second baseman for the Bats. India would easily get playing time over veterans Mike Freeman and Max Schrock who currently comprise one half of the Louisville infield.

Optioning India to Triple-A is in no way giving on on their top infield prospect, but rather giving him the opportunity to find success. Bell cannot, in good conscience, give India the starting nod over Senzel. And, with Tyler Naquin blistering the ball to begin the season, switching Senzel from center field to second base was the best solution to get both their bats in the lineup.

Shogo Akiyama is experiencing the same thing, as the Japanese outfielder has only had one start in four games since he returned from the IL. Both Akiyama and Naquin are left-handed bats, so it stands to reason why Bell is electing to charge ahead with the former Cleveland Indians outfielder.

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Jonathan India’s time will come. We’ve seen what the former University of Florida alum can do on the diamond. But, with his best interest in mind, the Cincinnati Reds should make the difficult decision to option India to Triple-A Louisville. The Reds will still have two utility infielders in Alex Blandino and Kyle Farmer.