A longtime member of the Baltimore Orioles, Mancini agreed to a deal with the Cubs during the offseason, but was recently designated for assignment. In 79 games this season, the 31-year-old is hitting just .234/.299/.336.
According to FanGraphs, Mancini owns a wRC+ of just 73 and has been a below-average outfielder with -2 defensive runs saved (DRS) in just 26 innings played. But, while Mancini's numbers don't jump off the page, the veteran would be a better option that the hot-hitting Jose Barrero for one simple reason.
If the Reds are going to recall Jose Barrero, he needs everyday at-bats.
Look, you're not going to find a bigger fan of Jose Barrero than me. In my estimation, the 25-year-old has not been given a fair shake by the Cincinnati Reds organization. He was rushed to the big leagues in 2020, received inconsistent playing time out of position in 2021, and was coming off an injury in 2022.
For those who may not know, Barrero has played in just 139 major league games with only 447 at-bats. That's less than a full season. Now, he's certainly struggled when given the opportunity to the tune of .186/.242/.255 with a strikeout-rate of 36.5-percent.
But, since returning to Triple-A Louisville earlier this season, Jose Barrero has been unstoppable. In 52 games, Barrero is hitting .281/.342/.587 with a wRC+ of 119. Since July 1st, Barrero has been blistering the ball while slashing .321/.380/.667 with 10 doubles, four triples, and 12 home runs.
But, unless the Cincinnati Reds are going to commit to recalling Jose Barrero and playing him every day in the outfield, it would be better for him to just stay put in Triple-A. With a starting outfield of TJ Friedl, Will Benson, and Spencer Steer, there's no way Barrero will play every day. It would be even harder once Jake Fraley returns.
The Reds may be looking to improve Jose Barrero's trade value by keeping him in the minors, or the club could bring him into spring training next season and allow him to audition for a spot in the outfield. But if Barrero is recalled at some point this season, he needs to be in David Bell's everyday lineup.