Chad Pinder's versatility makes him near-lock for the Reds Opening Day roster

Cincinnati Reds utility player Chad Pinder
Cincinnati Reds utility player Chad Pinder / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

In case you haven't been paying attention, non-roster invitee Chad Pinder has proven to be quite the versatile player since Cactus League games began last week.

The Cincinnati Reds signed Pinder to a minor-league deal this offseason. It was initially assumed by many that Pinder would be vying for a spot in the outfield, but his versatility makes the former second-round pick a virtual lock for the Reds Opening Day roster.

On Friday afternoon at Camelback Ranch in Cincinnati's exhibition game against the Chicago White Sox, Pinder started at first base. That makes the fourth different position that Pinder has played in four Cactus League games.

Chad Pinder is near-lock for the Reds Opening Day roster.

Chad Pinder was in the lineup for 111 games with the Oakland Athletics in 2022. Outside of two starts at first base and two starts at third base, the majority of Pinder's starts with the A's came as a corner outfielder of as the team's designated hitter.

In four games this spring, Pinder has played first, second, and third base and also played four innings in left field. With the Reds carrying three catchers into the regular season, having a player with Pinder's versatility could come in very handy in 2023.

While the Reds have toyed withe concept of using Nick Senzel in a similar fashion, the former first-round pick hasn't been able to suit up in games this spring following offseason toe surgery. Nick Solak is another versatile player to watch this season, but the former Texas Ranger has a minor leauge option remaining and could be stashed away at Triple-A to begin the season.

Based on the Cincinnati Reds roster construction, it's a good bet that Chad Pinder will break camp with the big league club. Whether he's in the Opening Day lineup on March 30th or what position he plays may yet be determined.

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