The 2022-23 offseason is crucial for Reds shortstop Jose Barrero

Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero
Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

Jose Barrero had a cup of coffee with the Cincinnati Reds during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. The young infielder got his feet wet again in 2021, but was moved around the diamond and was never really given a consistent spot in the lineup.

But this past season, after the trade deadline, the Reds finally gave Barrero a chance to prove his worth. Unfortunately, Barrero dropped the baton on multiple occasions rather than running with it.

In his most extended action to date, Barrero hit just .152/.195/.206 and struck out 76 times in 165 at-bats. To put it mildly, Barrero was not good at all.

The 2022-23 offseason is crucial for Reds SS Jose Barrero.

So the question entering the offseason is how will the young infielder rebound from such a disastrous campaign? While Jose Barrero has fewer than 300 major league plate appearances, the Cincinnati Reds have a plethora of young shortstops who are coming up through the pipeline, and all of them have their eyes fixed on becoming a starting shortstop in the big leagues.

Elly De La Cruz and Matt McLain are both likely to be in Goodyear competing with Barrero for a spot on the Reds Opening Day roster next season. If the young Cuban cannot show improvement during spring training and Cactus League play, there's a good chance that Barrero will begin the 2023 in Triple-A.

One has to wonder if the early-season wrist surgery had something to do with Barrero's horrendous performance in 2022, as the Reds' 2021 Minor League Player of the Year, even struggled during his time at Triple-A Louisville last season. But that excuse won't fly once the team descends upon Arizona in February. It's going to be about results.

Jose Barrero has all the tools necessary to be a starting shortstop in the major leagues, but his pitch recognition is questionable at best. This offseason, and how Barrero addresses the concerns, will be crucial to his development and where he finds himself at the beginning of the 2023 season. Will Barrero be on the Opening Day roster or toiling away in the Derby City?

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