Bleacher Report's Reds roster prediction confirms why Jonathan India must be traded

This is the reason so many fans want to see Jonathan India traded before Opening Day.
Cincinnati Reds infielder Jonathan India
Cincinnati Reds infielder Jonathan India / Gregory Shamus/GettyImages
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Bleacher Report recently published their latest roster projections for the upcoming season. While predicting the Opening Day lineup of all 30 major league teams, the outlet had some intriguing selections for the Cincinnati Reds.

Unsurprisingly, TJ Friedl and Matt Matt McLain were selected to occupy the top two spots in Cincinnati's batting order. Bleacher Report even went as far to name McLain the starting second baseman; something David Bell should do once spring training begins in less than two weeks.

But eventually the elephant in the room made an appearance. Jonathan India is noted to be the Reds' starting designated hitter and batting sixth in the lineup. That's all well and good until it's revealed that Christian Encarnacion-Strand is not part of the projected Opening Day lineup and neither is Will Benson.

Bleacher Report's roster prediction confirms why Reds must trade Jonathan India

Having depth on the roster is one thing. But having so much depth that it forces young, everyday players into bench role is just asinine. Yes, injuries occur and the Reds need to keep that in mind as the 2024 roster is put into place. But the Reds aren't just 10 players deep, they're more like 12 players deep.

In addition to the starting nine that Bleacher Report selected, the Reds have Encarnacion-Strand, Benson, and Luke Maile sitting in the dugout. The outlet even suggested that the Reds could opt to send Noelvi Marte to Triple-A to start the season in order to balance out the roster. That might be more egregious that putting Encarnacion-Strand on the bench.

Player

Position

TJ Friedl

CF

Matt McLain

2B

Spencer Steer

LF

Jeimer Candelario

1B

Elly De La Cruz

SS

Jonathan India

DH

Jake Fraley

RF

Noelvi Marte

3B

Tyler Stephenson

C

The writing has been on the wall since the Reds signed Jeimer Candelario back in December - Jonathan India's time in Cincinnati is coming to an end. The 27-year-old is a fine player, but given the amount of trade speculation that has existed this offseason, it shouldn't be hard for the front office to find a taker.

After watching the Minnesota Twins and Seattle Mariners pul off a trade this past week that included another talented infielder (Jorge Polanco), the Cincinnati Reds now have a blueprint for what a potential deal involving India could look like.

Unless an injury befalls one of the Reds top infielders this spring, the trade conversations surrounding India will invade the regular season. President of baseball operations Nick Krall needs to do the right thing for both the team and India, and find a new home for the former NL Rookie of the Year before these rumors become a bigger distraction than they already are.

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