5 prospects the Reds must protect from the Rule 5 Draft and 2 who should be left exposed

The Reds have a lot of talented prospects who'll need to be added to the 40-man roster this offseason.

Cincinnati Reds outfielder Rece Hinds
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Rece Hinds / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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The Reds must protect Rece Hinds from the Rule 5 Draft

Rece Hinds had, perhaps, his best season as a professional baseball player in 2023. The former second-round pick had struggled for years to cut down on the strikeouts.

While that number was still high this season, those swing and misses didn't prevent Hinds from making an impact with an .866 OPS and a wRC+ of 121 according to FanGraphs. Hinds also recorded 23 home runs and 98 RBI.

This was a make-it or break-it year for Rece Hinds. The 22-year-old has faced a ton of adversity in his young career, including a variety of injuries over the years. Hinds also made the switch from third base to the outfield during the 2022.

The transition hasn't been seamless, but there aren't major concerns about Hinds' ability to stick on the outfield grass over the long haul. With so many young infielders in the Reds farm system, moving Hinds off third base was a necessity.

If Hinds can develop into the player that Cincinnati hopes he can be, they may have a power-bat just waiting to break onto the scene. However, there's a lot of swing and miss in his game. The Cincinnati Reds have no choice but to protect Hinds from the Rule 5 Draft this offseason.