Acquisition of Nick Solak brings this necessary element to the Reds lineup

Rangers designated hitter Nick Solak.
Rangers designated hitter Nick Solak. / Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Reds roster is back up to 40 after swinging a trade for utility infielder/ outfielder Nick Solak on Thursday afternoon. In exchange, the Reds sent cash considerations to the Texas Rangers.

Solak was a standout the University of Louisville. The Illinois native played three seasons for the Cardinals and posted a .926 OPS and a .346 batting average.

His tenure at U of L led the New York Yankees to select Solak in the second round of the 2016 MLB Draft. Solak was then traded to the Tampa Bay Rays prior to he 2018 season and joined the Rangers organization in 2019.

Acquisition of Nick Solak brings this necessary element to the Reds lineup.

While Nick Solak has yet to consistently demonstrate it at the major league level, the 27-year-old has a long track record of hitting for average and getting on base. While his career slash line in the big leagues is just .252/.328/.372, Solak typically maintains a strikeout-rate below 20.0%, which is something that not many Cincinnati Reds could have said last season.

Solak is a rather disciplined hitter, but doesn't draw many walks. Instead, Solak uses his gap-to-gap power to lace line drives into the outfield. Solak has a career-OPS of .852 in the minor leagues, but that number drops to .700 in the majors.

Solak will likely be utilized all over the field. Solak has played on the outfield grass and the infield dirt, but his fringy arm will likely play best at second base. Of course, the Cincinnati Reds already have a handful of players who fit that mold, so it may be very difficult for Solak to crack into the lineup.

More than likely, the Reds view Nick Solak as a utility outfielder. A right-handed hitter, Solak could give David Bell the ability to platoon him with the left-handed hitting Jake Fraley in left field. Time will tell what Solak's future will look like in Cincinnati.

Next. 5 prospects who'll be added to the Reds 40-man roster. dark