Well, his time has finally come. FanSided's Robert Murray is reporting that Cincinnati Reds prospect Christian Encarnacion-Strand is being called up to the big leagues. Encarnacion-Strand was scratched from the lineup prior to the Louisville Bats game against the Nashville Sounds.
This is the latest in a series of moves that have infused the Reds roster with young, talented players. Elly De La Cruz, Matt McLain, and Andrew Abbott have already made their mark. Reds fans are hopeful to see the same impact from Encarnacion-Strand.
The Reds roster currently stands at 39, so Cincinnati doesn't need to make any drastic moves once Encarnacion-Strand is called up. Barring a trade or someone being placed on the IL, which Reds players are safe and who is most likely to lose his spot on the active roster?
Reds catcher Curt Casali won't lose his roster spot to Christian Encarnacion-Strand.
This is probably the least likely scenario. I know, I know, three catchers on the roster has grown tiresome, and Curt Casali hasn't started since Independence Day in Washington DC. But the veteran backstop has a place on the Cincinnati Reds roster.
No, Casali isn't going to hit for .300, or even .250. But his main task is to call a good game. There's more to the life of a catcher than hitting. In fact, finding a catcher that is an above-average hitter, receiver, and pitch-caller is rare.
If the Reds chose to sever ties with Casali, he would have be designated for assignment. The 34-year-old is out of minor league options and would have to pass through waivers and accept an outright assignment to Triple-A in order to remain with the organization.
Rosters are set to expand in about six weeks. The Cincinnati Reds have made it this far, and with a team-option included with his contract, there's a chance that the club would like to bring Casali back in 2024.
Curt Casali's lack of playing time certainly warrants his inclusion on this list, but it seems like his role with this year's team is one that David Bell covets. Don't be so quick to dismiss Casali just because Christian Encarnacion-Strand is joining the team.