3 free agents, not named Tucker Barnhart, that could back up Reds' catcher Tyler Stephenson in 2023

Seattle Mariners catcher Curt Casali.
Seattle Mariners catcher Curt Casali. / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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3. The Reds could reunite with former catcher Curt Casali.

If the Cincinnati Reds and former catcher Tucker Barnhart are unable to come to terms on a free agent contract, perhaps another former catcher would return to the Queen City. Curt Casali, who played for the Reds from 2018-2020 is also a free agent this offseason.

While many fans fondly remember Barnhart's time in Cincinnati, Casali had his moments as well. In fact, there were many who felt as though it was in the Reds best interest to keep three catchers heading into the 2021 season.

But the Reds front office decided against that idea, choosing instead to roll with the catching duo or Tucker Barnhart and Tyler Stephenson in 2021, and the club non-tendered Casali in December of 2020. Casali quickly latched on with the San Francisco Giants that offseason.

Casali signed a $2.6M contract with San Fran this past season, but was traded along with pitcher Matt Boyd to the Seattle Mariners in August. Casali hit .203/.318/.331 last season, and much like Austin Romine and Austin Hedges, the 33-year-old is much more well-regarded for his ability behind the plate than he is in the batters' box.

A reunion with Curt Casali seems a little less likely than a reunion with Tucker Barnhart, but for the right price, the Cincinnati Reds could surely entice the veteran to return. Free agency opens shortly after the World Series ends in early-November.

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