Extended absence of Reds' young star may alter Spencer Steer's future position

Will Spencer Steer ever find a permanent position?

Cincinnati Reds first baseman Spencer Steer
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Spencer Steer / Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Spencer Steer has been a jack-of-all-trades since arriving in the Cincinnati Reds organization back in 2022. Steer, who was originally drafted by the Minnesota Twins as a shortstop, has seen playing time all over the diamond during his first two-plus seasons in the big leagues.

Last season, Steer opened the year as the Reds Opening Day third baseman. But after the Tyler Stephenson at first base experiment crashed and burned, Cincinnati moved Steer from the hot corner to the other side of the diamond.

This past offseason, it was revealed that Steer would log most of his time in left field. And that was the case during the early-going, but injuries have required Steer to play all over the field once again. But sooner rather than later, one would assume that Steer will eventually find a permanent defensive home.

Spencer Steer may well replace Christian Encarnacion-Strand as the Reds everyday first baseman

Christian Encarnacion-Strand's extended stay on the IL may turn Steer into the Reds' long-term solution at first base. It was recently revealed that Encarnacion-Strand received a second opinion on his injured wrist, and it seems unlikely that the slugger will to rejoin the Reds before the All-Star break.

CES's absence, along with that of Noelvi Marte and Matt McLain, has caused a number of alterations to what many thought would be a crowded infield this season. Jonathan India has logged a number of starts at second base after getting in reps as an outfielder this spring. Jeimer Candelario has started most games at third base, and has split time with the Reds' early-spring trade acquisition Santiago Espinal.

With Blake Dunn and Jaco Hurtubise now receiving a good amount of playing time, it's going to be difficult to move Steer back to the outfield. Throw in Jake Fraley, TJ Friedl, and Will Benson, and all of the sudden, the Reds infield and outfield appear rather crowded.

When he returns from the IL, Encarnacion-Strand could be the odd-man-out in the Reds' infield. These things have a way of solving themselves, and it's quite possible that a trade deadline move could impact this year's Reds roster even more. But Steer looks like a fixture on David Bell's lineup card, meaning that he needs a permanent spot in the field as well.

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