While the 2023 season was supposed to be all about the rebuild in the Queen City, the Cincinnati Reds are ahead of schedule. The Redlegs have pieced together a fine showing thus far and are in the hunt for a playoff spot over the final few weeks of the 2023 campaign.
But how the final month-plus of the season ends could have a giant impact on how several players may be viewed entering the offseason or spring training.
Despite their best efforts, some players who were ticketed to be part of the Reds plans in 2024 may have well played their way off the roster. Are there three players whose performance down the stretch may factor into Cincinnati's decision about whether or not to bring them back next season?
1. Nick Senzel may have played his way out of the Reds' 2024 plans.
It may seem as though everyone is ganging up on Nick Senzel, but this is just where the former first-round pick finds himself at the moment. Senzel was optioned to Triple-A Louisville last week, and appeared to take his entire 72-hour window to report. That's not a very positive sign.
Senzel, along with fellow infielder Kevin Newman, have played a very specific role for Reds manager David Bell this season. Senzel has been utilized primarily as a platoon bat against left-handed pitching in 2023 and has played all over the field as well.
Prior to the MLB trade deadline, Senzel met with Reds management to discuss his diminshed role with the team. After that meeting, Senzel started seven of the next eight games and went 4-for-30 (.138). If you're going to advocate for more playing time, you've got to go out and prove why you deserve it. Senzel didnt' do that.
The Cincinnati Reds have plenty of young players who'll be ready to take Nick Senzel's spot on the team in 2024 if the two sides do part ways. At this point, it seems unlikely that fans will see Senzel in Reds uniform next year. Senzel has played his way out of the Reds' plans for 2024.