Reds: 3 players on pace to make their first All-Star Game

CINCINNATI, OHIO - APRIL 17: Jesse Winker #33 and Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrate in the ninth inning. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - APRIL 17: Jesse Winker #33 and Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrate in the ninth inning. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds reacts on second base after hitting a double.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 26: Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds reacts on second base after hitting a double. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images) /

2. Nick Castellanos, Reds outfielder

Few players in Major League Baseball have had a better start to the season than the aforementioned Jesse Winker, but his teammate Nick Castellanos has had an amazing start to the 2021 season as well. Castellanos’ 1.048 OPS leads the National League, as does his .648 slugging percentage.

Much of the early-season focus on Castellanos was focused on the minor dust up with the St. Louis Cardinals which netted the Reds’ slugger a two-game suspension. But, with the two-game ban now behind him, Castellanos has flat-out raked. In addition to leading the league in slugging and OPS, Castellanos trails only Winker in batting average (.338).

Nick Castellanos got off to an incredible start in 2020 as well, but fell off after the first month. Castellanos hit .393/.469/.929 with four home runs and 11 RBIs thorough the Reds first eight games. However, the Cincinnati right fielder hit just .200/.271/.421 with 10 home runs and 23 RBIs over the final 52 games of the abbreviated season.

The Cincinnati Reds would not be off to the relatively hot start we’ve seen this season had it not been for the aggressive hitting of both Jesse Winker and Nick Castellanos. The 29-year-old is easily in the conversation for NL MVP, and may well be on his way to his very fist All-Star Game on July 13th.