3 Reds players who've exceeded expectations during their first year with the organization

The Cincinnati Reds have seen success from new players within the organization.

Cincinnati Reds outfielder Will Benson
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Will Benson / Dylan Buell/GettyImages
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3. Catcher Luke Maile has exceeded expectations in his 1st year with the Reds.

I will freely admit that I've been overly critical of Luke Maile this season. There were moments throughout 2023 when it made absolutely zero sense to carry three catchers, and yet the Cincinnati Reds did it anyway.

But after seeing how well Maile has played, especially of late, I dare say that he is the Reds best catcher, and I hope the team has aspirations of bringing him back in 2024.

Everyone knew coming into 2023 that Maile's glove was his best asset. Former first-round pick Tyler Stephenson was supposed to carry the heavy lumber, Curt Casali was said to have that great rapport with the pitching staff, and Maile would be fine defensive catcher that might seen the field once a week.

One-third of the way through the season, I don't think it's hyperbole to say that Maile is the Reds best catcher. In fact, he's played so well that it's almost guaranteed that the Cincinnati Reds front office will look to bring him back in 2024.

Stephenson's future is still rather muddled. Whether he's still recovering from shoulder surgery or is just regressing from his first two seasons is unknown. But what is known is that there isn't a catcher in the Reds farm system who is ready to take over behind the plate in 2024. There may not even be a developmental catcher ready until midway through the 2025 season.

No one is going to confuse Luke Maile for Johnny Bench. But he's as consistent as they come behind the plate, is a great team leader, and has come up with clutch hits on more than one occasion. Maile has found success during his first season in Cincinnati.

dark. Next. Reds roster Sept 1st. 4 players who won't be on the Reds roster by September 1st