Jonathan India finally broke out of his slump on Wednesday night against the Boson Red Sox. Heading into last night's contest, India was 4-for-40 in his last 12 games. But the Cincinnati Reds second baseman went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and run scored last night.
India appeared to be locked in to the role of leadoff hitter heading into the 2022 season, but nagging leg injuries forced the reigning Rookie of the Year to miss a good chunk of this year.
Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell has been tinkering with the lineup over the past few weeks and India has seen a lot of time batting second; oftentimes behind outfielder T.J. Friedl. Could this be a sign of things to come in 2023?
Reds 2B Jonathan India may no longer be the leadoff hitter.
Since the beginning of August, Jonathan India has started 40 games and batted second in more than half. Oftentimes, if the left-handed hitting TJ Friedl is in the lineup, David Bell has slotted the outfielder as the team's leadoff batter.
Looking ahead to the 2023 season, the No. 2 hole might fit India quite well. That would be especially true if Friedl maintains hitting in the leadoff. The longtime prospect has proven that he has staying power in the big leagues and should be part of the Reds everyday lineup next season.
With Friedl and India setting the table, the rehabbing duo of Joey Votto and Tyler Stephenson would likely be occupying the No. 3 and No. 4 spots in the lineup. Those four would provide Bell with speed and power atop the batting order and a good enough on-base percentage as well.
Finding a consistent lineup will be crucial for the Cincinnati Reds next season. Whether it's been injuries or lack of production, there hadn't been much consistency atop the Reds batting order this season. This has been especially true ever since Brandon Drury and Tommy Pham were traded at the August 2nd deadline.