5 players the Cincinnati Reds gave up on way too soon

Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner
Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner / Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports
3 of 5

3. The Reds gave up on Josh Hamilton way too soon.

Former No. 1 overall pick Josh Hamilton was, at one time, a member of the Cincinnati Reds. Hamilton's story involves tragedy and overcoming adversity. Selected first-overall in 1999 by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Hamilton battled drug addition throughout his major league career.

Hamilton was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 2006 Rule 5 Draft and then immediately dealt to the Reds. During the following season, Hamilton played 90 games, crushed 19 home runs and posted an OPS of .922.

The Reds then pivoted from Hamilton and traded the slugger to the Texas Rangers during the offseason. In exchange, Cincinnati received pitchers Edinson Volquez and Danny Herrera.

Following the trade, Josh Hamilton became a star. From 2008-2012, Hamilton went to five consecutive All-Star Games, won three Silver Slugger Awards, and won the AL MVP in 2010 while finishing in the Top 7 two other times during that five-year span.

For those five season, Hamilton was playing up to the potential that saw him drafted No. 1 overall all those years ago. The slugger slashed .305/.363/.549 with 142 home runs and 506 runs batted in. The Reds gave up on Josh Hamilton much too soon.