3 Reds who should be offered extensions during the offseason and 1 who still has something to prove

Cincinnati Reds catcher Tyler Stephenson.
Cincinnati Reds catcher Tyler Stephenson. / Joe Sargent/GettyImages
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The Reds should sign Hunter Greene to a contract extension.

Why not both, right? Based on his potential, one would assume that Hunter Greene's price tag would likely be higher than Nick Lodolo's. That may put a pause on the Cincinnati Reds efforts to sign the former first-round pick to a long-term extension, but inking Greene to a six-year deal would prove that ownership is serious about contending down the road.

Greene struggled early during his rookie season, but it can't be stated enough that the right-hander was just 22 years old and missed two years of competition due to elbow surgery (2019) and the coronavirus pandemic (2020).

But after posting solid numbers in the minors during the 2021 season, Greene was elevated to the 40-man roster and was part of the Reds Opening Day starting rotation. After some early-season struggles with the long ball, Greene righted the ship and closed out his rookie campaign with four straight sparkling performances.

Greene has the look of an ace, and the only hangup when it comes to a long-term extension may be his injury history. Greene has already undergone Tommy John surgery once, and a pitcher with his type of velocity could find himself under the knife again at some point in the future.

Just like Nick Lodolo, some fans may think it's a bit premature to sign Hunter Greene to a six or seven contract extension. But if the Cincinnati Reds are ever to keep him in the Queen City, they'll have to agree to terms on a new contract sooner rather than later. Eventually, Greene will price himself out of the Reds' market.