4 former Reds players that Cincinnati will regret letting go in 2024

The Reds are going to miss these players more than fans want to admit.

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Vladimir Gutierrez (53)
Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Vladimir Gutierrez (53) / Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports
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Though the Cincinnati Reds did not clean house this winter, the club did undergo some roster changes. The youth movement is in full-effect, as players like Elly De La Cruz, Noelvi Marte, and Matt McLain are looking to establish themselves as the next generation of great players in franchise history.

But with the ascensions the Reds young talent came the dismissal of some of the old guard. Most prominent among them being Joey Votto whose $20 million club-option for the 2024 season was declined.

And while Votto's presence in the clubhouse, and even his on-field production, may be missed, Cincinnati added Jeimer Candelario in free agency and will look to Christian Encarnacion-Strand to man first base in 2024. But there are some other, perhaps more concerning, subtractions from last year's team that the Reds may regret making this offseason.

1. Vladimir Gutierrez, Right-handed pitcher

Nick Krall and Cincinnati's front office received a very humbling lesson over the final month of the 2023 season; you can never have enough pitching. The Reds failed to add anything other than a left-handed reliever at the trade deadline last August, and it may have cost the team a chance at the playoffs.

That isn't to say that Krall and Co. made the wrong move. All signs suggested the asking prices for starting pitching was outrageous, and If Krall judged the asking price to be far too great, so be it. But with pitching being so valuable, why did the Reds part ways with Vladimir Gutierrez? After undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2022, Gutierrez made just five rehab outings at the end of last season.

Gutierrez went 9-6 during his first year in the big leagues and garnered Rookie of the Year votes. While Gutierrez struggled during his second season in the majors, we saw the same thing from Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo, and Graham Ashcraft last season. Gutierrez wasn't going to eat up a lot of payroll and has minor league options remaining.

The right-hander was outrighted shortly after the 2023 season came to close and elected free agency. A little over a month ago, it was reported that Gutierrez had interest from several major league clubs. Having a starter who's gone more than 100 innings in a season shouldn't be dismisses so quickly, and the Reds may live to regret this decision.


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