The Cincinnati Reds 2024 Opening Day roster is slowly, but surely, becoming clearer. While the Reds still have some work to do on the pitching side of things, the position players seem all but set.
After adding Jeimer Candelario on a three-year deal and turning Spencer Steer into a full-time outfielder, it would seem as though 12 of the 13 spots have been claimed. In addition to Candelario and Steer, Jonathan India, Jake Fraley, Tyler Stephenson, and TJ Friedl will be on the roster.
Throw in Elly De La Cruz, Christian Encarnacion-Strand, Noelvi Marte, Will Benson, Matt McLain, and Luke Maile, and there's only one spot left. Assuming every player is healthy when the club is ready to leave Goodyear next March, who's the odds-on favorite to snag that final roster spot?
Reds 2024 Opening Day roster: First year on the 40-man
The Cincinnati Reds added three young prospects to the 40-man roster last month. Pitcher Christian Roa and outfielders Jacob Hurtubise and Rece Hinds were selected in order to protect the trio from the Rule 5 Draft.
Roa will likely be competing for a chance to earn a spot in the starting rotation. But for all intents and puurposes, is likely to begin the 2024 season at Triple-A Louisville. Frankly, that's probably where all three players are ticketed to begin next season.
Barring injury to one of the team's primary outfielders, look for both Hurtubise and Hinds to start the 2024 season with the Louisville Bats. Hurtubise is the more advanced of the two prospects, but Hinds has virutally unlimited potential as a middle-of-the-order bat.
Hurtubise has a similar profile to TJ Friedl while Hinds is a dead-ringer for Aristides Aquino. Hurtubise will use his speed to get on base by any means necessary, while Hinds is known for his raw power.
But with the Cincinnati Reds roster deep enough in the outfield, it hardly seems likely that Jacob Hurtubise or Rece Hinds will be ready by the time Opening Day comes around. Both, however, will probably find their way to The Show sometime in 2024.