Reds prospect Austin Hendrick has a lot left to prove.
Whether or not Austin Hendrick's promotion to Double-A Chattanooga was deserved or not is certainly debatable, but there's no question that the Cincinnati Reds need to see what they truly have in the former first-round pick.
Hendrick was selected in Round 1 of the 2020 MLB Draft. That event was not traditional in the least, and the lack of play on the part of both high school and college players caused innumerable questionable selections. Hendrick, as turns out, may have been one of them.
That's not to say that the Pennsylvania high school product can't turn into an impact player in the major leagues, but with the truncated 2020 season, scouts really didn't get to properly evaluate many of the talented players in that year's draft.
The power is something that no one is going to question. Hendrick possessed the most raw power in the 2020 MLB Draft among any prep player, and perhaps has more raw power than anyone in that year's draft class. But making contact has been difficult for the 22-year-old.
Austin Hendrick was hitting .204/.271/.335 with a wRC+ of 71 and a strikeout-rate of 35.9-percent according to FanGraphs. There's a lot of concern that Hendrick may never figure it out, but those same concerns existed for Rece Hinds prior to this season, and the former second-round pick has turned things around.
Hendrick still needs a lot fo seasoning, and the Reds are not pressed add him to the team's 40-man roster this offseason. But the outfielder will need to make a ton of adjustments in 2024 if he hopes to make his major league dreams a reality.