3 Reds players in danger of losing their 40-man roster spot to Matt McLain

Cincinnati Reds infielder Matt McLain
Cincinnati Reds infielder Matt McLain / Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY
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2. Reds infielder Kevin Newman could lose his 40-man roster spot to Matt McLain.

This may be the easiest way for the Cincinnati Reds to call up Matt McLain, but it also feels like the most unlikely. In this scenario, the Reds would designate Kevin Newman for assignment, which would open the door for McLain to become Cincinnati's everyday shortstop.

The Reds just traded for Newman during the offseason, and gave up talented reliever Dauri Moreta in order to do it. By the way, Moreta has made 16 appearances out of the bullpen and has an ERA of 2.37 with 26 strikeouts in 19 innings of work. But, let's move on.

Newman has been on the struggle bus lately. The former Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop is hitting a measly .237/.273/.323, though in his last seven games, Newman is 6-for-20 with no strikeouts. The 29-year-old was 2-for-3 in yesterday's game versus the Miami Marlins.

But it's been on the defensive side where things have unraveled. Newman's infield defense has been shaky at best. During Sunday's game, Newman made at least two, if not three, miscues. On the season, Newman has two errors, a fielding percentage of .969, and, according to Fielding Bible, -4 defensive runs saved (DRS).

In hindsight, the trade looks like a major whiff on the part of the Cincinnati Reds. The team was looking to add an insurance policy at shortstop in case Jose Barrero struggled to overcome last year's failures. Well, Barrero is still struggling and Newman has done nothing to solidify his spot either.

Regardless of how the Reds clear the roster spot, Kevin Newman's time as the starting shortstop in Cincinnati may be coming to a close. Newman has one minor league option remaining, so the Reds could just send him to Triple-A. But, the team would still need to make room on the 40-man roster for Matt McLain.