2 former Reds join Eugenio Suarez out West as D-backs seek return to World Series

The D-backs have signed a pair of former Reds players.
Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart (16) warms up
Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart (16) warms up / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

In 2022, it was the Seattle Mariners and Minnesota Twins. Heading into 2024, it appears as though the Arizona Diamondbacks will serve as the secondary rooting interest for the Cincinnati Reds faithful.

Recent reports have seen two former Reds players head out to the desert to join the D-backs. According to Robert Murray of FanSided, Tucker Barnhart has signed a minor-league deal with an invite to spring training. Jon Heyman of the New York Post is reporting that former Cincinnati shortstop Kevin Newman has signed with Arizona as well.

Barnhart was a fan-favorite in Cincinnati for most of his professional career before being traded to the Detroit Tigers after the 2021 season. Newman, who'd spent his formative years with the Pittsburgh Pirates, was dealt to the Reds last offseason to help pave the way for Elly De La Cruz.

Former Reds Tucker Barnhart and Kevin Newman sign with the D-backs

The Arizona Diamondbacks, fresh off their trip to the World Series, have been one of the most active teams this offseason. In addition to signing Tucker Barnhart and Kevin Newman, the D-backs have re-signed Lourdes Gurriel Jr., inked starter Eduardo Rodriguez to a multi-year deal, and traded for former Cincinnati Reds third baseman Eugenio Suarez.

The Diamondbacks shipped catcher Seby Zavala and reliever Carlos Vargas to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for Suarez. Geno was originally part of the 2022 trade that sent both he and Jesse Winker to the Emerald City in exchange for Brandon Williamson, Connor Phillips, Justin Dunn, and Jake Fraley. Dunn is the only player from that trade who is no longer part of the Reds, while both Suarez and Winker have since left Seattle.

Barnhart will likely look to secure a backup role to Gabriel Moreno. The rookie catcher excelled last season after being traded from the Toronto Blue Jays and won a Gold Glove during his first year in the big leagues. Barnhart himself has some hardware, as the former Reds backstop won a Gold Glove Award in both 2017 and 2020.

Newman will likely serve a similar role for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2024 that he did for the Cincinnati Reds in 2023. Jordan Lawlar, the D-backs' top prospect, is angling for a spot on Arizona's 2024 Opening Day roster. Newman can be that veteran who either helps fill the gap if Lawlar isn't ready for The Show, or acts as the team's backup across the middle infield.

The Cincinnati Reds and Arizona Diamondbacks have been the two most aggressive teams this offseason outside of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Reds fans are hoping to see their team follow in the D-backs' footsteps and make some noise in the postseason during the upcoming season.