3 Reds players who don't deserve to be on the 40-man roster

Cincinnati Reds outfielder Nick Senzel
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Nick Senzel / Rich Schultz/GettyImages
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A spot on the Cincinnati Reds 40-man roster will be tough to come by in 2023. Sure, the team is undergoing a rebuild, but with the focus on the future, Cincinnati doesn't have spots to waste on veterans who will not be part of the next contending Reds team.

The Redlegs have already wisely parted ways with veterans like Mike Moustakas and Kyle Farmer. Young players like Jared Solomon and Allan Cerda were also ushered off the 40-man roster, but both will be invited to spring training in Goodyear next month.

With talented prospects like Andrew Abbott, Connor Phillips, and Matt McLain all looking to make their way to The Show this season, some players currently occupying a spot on the 40-man roster won't be there for much longer. Which three players no longer deserve a spot on the Cincinnati Reds 40-man roster?

Joel Kuhnel does not deserve to be on the Reds 40-man roster.

It's a bit puzzling that Joel Kuhnel is still part of the Cincinnati Reds 40-man roster. Kuhnel was a non-roster invitee last spring and ended up throwing 58 innings out of the Reds bullpen. But Kuhnel's best ability may have been his avail-ability.

The Reds bullpen endured a huge number of injuries in 2022 - many of which resulted in placement on the 60-day IL. Tejay Antone missed all of last season, and pitchers like Lucas Sims, Tony Santillan, Jeff Hoffman, and Vladimir Gutierrez missed extended chunks of time last season.

Kuhnel, for his part, was always available when called upon. But the hard-throwing right-hander recorded just 56 punch outs in 58 innings and was lit up for an ERA of 6.36. As the season waned, it appeared as though Kuhnel was just out of gas.

There'll be a tremendous amount of pressure on Joel Kuhnel during spring training as several young and aspiring pitchers will be looking to inherit his spot on the 40-man roster. He'lll face stiff competition from the likes of Derek Law, Daniel Duarte, and other non-roster invitees.

Nick Senzel does not deserve to be on the Reds 40-man roster.

The Cincinnati Reds bid farewell to Aristides Aquino and Mike Moustakas earlier this offseason. Both players, who figured prominently in years past, had worn out their welcome in the Queen City. The same can be said for Nick Senzel, and yet, the former first-round pick is still on the 40-man roster.

This spring could spell the end for the 27-year-old, as Senzel will face competition for playing time from the group a group of young outfielders. Michael Siani, TJ Friedl, and Stuart Fairchild will all look to dethrone Senzel as the Reds starting centerfielder in 2023.

There've been rumors about a possible position change or even a super utility role for Senzel in 2023. However, with players like Alejo Lopez and Spencer Steer on the roster, and Matt Reynolds in camp, that idea may have to take a back seat.

If Senzel is going to remain on the Cincinnati Reds roster, he's going to have to fight for his job. Not only are the likes of Fairchild, Friedl, and Siani looking for a spot on the Reds Opening Day roster, but former first-round pick Matt McLain has yet to be added to the 40-man roster. Cincinnati also acquired Nick Solak in a trade earlier this offseason.

Nick Senzel has had more than enough chances to prove his worth, and has a career-bWAR of -1.8 to show for it. The Reds have been very patient with Senzel throughout his career, but their patience may be wearing thin.

Kevin Newman does not deserve to be on the Reds 40-man roster.

The Cincinnati Reds traded away Kyle Farmer this past fall, and in the same day acquired shortstop Kevin Newman from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for relief pitcher Dauri Moreta. Newman is little more than an insurance policy for the Reds in the event that Jose Barrero fails to improve upon his woeful 2022 performance.

The Reds have invested too much into Barrero to just shove him aside. That said, his leash will be very short heading into 2023 after the horrific performance he put forth during his extended time at shortstop last season.

Newman is an experienced shortstop who is known more his defense than his hitting. While his bat was relatively productive last season (.274/.316/.372), the previous two seasons saw Newman hit a combined .226/.268/.302.

The Cincinnati Reds also have a bevy of talented shortstops who'll be knocking on the major league door during the upcoming season. Fans throughout the tri-state area are excited about seeing Elly De La Cruz make his major league debut, but former first-round pick Matt McLain is very close to making it to The Show as well.

In the end, Kevin Newman feels like little more than a placeholder. If Barrero is able to show that 2022 was an outlier and not a sign of things to come, Newman become very expendable. If De La Cruz or McLain crack the Opening Day roster, then there's little reason at all for the former Bucs' shortstop to occupy a spot on the 40-man roster.

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