Former Red Sox prospect showcasing massive power for Reds' minor league affiliate

Nick Northcut is launching baseballs down in the minor leagues.
Red Sox Nick Northcut makes contact
Red Sox Nick Northcut makes contact / Lauren Roberts/Salisbury Daily Times via

Few, if any, Reds fans remember Cincinnati's trade deadline deal with the Boston Red Sox in 2022. That was a rather forgettable season, but as it turns out, the Cincinnati Reds may have actually found a diamond in the rough.

Nick Northcut was the player to be named later in that deal with the Red Sox. An 11th-round pick of Boston in 2018, Northcut wound up in the Reds' farm system after the 2022 season.

Nick Northcut was the player to be named later in the Red-Red Sox Tommy Pham trade

Northcut's first action as a member of the Reds' organization came last season with the Chattanooga Lookouts. The infielder hit just .216/.265/.392 and was left unprotected during this past winter's Rule 5 Draft.

But this season, Northcut has unleashed the power that saw him — at one time — relatively highly-rated in the Red Sox farm system. As a two-way prospect in high school, Northcut was named the 2018 Gatorade Player of the Year in Ohio, and this season he's showing everyone why.

Northcut, who's currently down at Double-A Chattanooga, is hitting .227/.288/.547 with 11 home runs and 18 extra-base hits. No, the batting average and on-base percentage are not what you want to see, but a slugging percentage of nearly .550 is extremely impressive.

Northcut is more than 50 points ahead of anyone else on the Chattanooga Lookouts roster and trails only Carson Williams (.569) and Heriberto Hernandez (.546) of the Montgomery Biscuits in the Southern League. Northcut's 11 round-trippers leads the Southern League with Williams (8) as his closest competition.

Northcut only had 10 homers last season, but did have a three-homer game last May while playing in Double-A. The majority of Northcut's starts this season have come at third base, but he's also getting in some work at first base as well.

Reds prospect Nick Northcut is hoping to make his MLB debut in 2024

The 24-year-old still has some work do down in the minor leagues before making the leap to The Show. There's a lot of swing-and-miss in his game. Northcut had 102 strikeouts in 69 games at Double-A last season, and already has compiled 42 whiffs in 35 games in 2024.

But as the game of baseball continues to evolve, teams have become more willing to look the other when it comes to strikeouts; provided players still gather a good amount of walks and extra-base hits. Northcut has certainly shown a penchant for the latter, and if he can raise his walk rate up to at least 10%, there's a chance Reds fans could see the infield prospect in Cincinnati sometime later this summer.

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