Jose Barrero's playing time has taken nosedive since grand slam at Fenway Park

Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero
Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero / Kirk Irwin/GettyImages

After launching a grand slam over the Green Monster during the Cincinnati Reds visit to Fenway Park a week ago, it appeared that maybe, just maybe, Jose Barrero was ready to break out. What happened?

Barrero was once a highly touted shortstop prospect for the Cincinnati Reds, but a lack of success in the big leagues has seen his star fade. With the addition of Matt McLain, and now T.J. Hopkins, Barrero has seen his playing time diminish quite a bit.

Aside from a pinch-running appearance in Friday's series opener, Barrero hasn't played since last week's series against the Red Sox. This decrease in playing time will only get worse with more prospects on the way, and Barrero's time on the 26-man roster may expire rather quickly.

What's happened to Jose Barrero's playing time?

Jose Barrero has seen his playing time decrease for a multitude of reasons. Rookies Matt McLain and Spencer Steer have been almost irreplaceable in the infield, locking down both shortstop and first base respectively. Jonathan India's position at second base, at least for now, is all but secure.

Third base has been the home of the resurgent Nick Senzel, and when the former No. 2 overall pick lines up in the outfield, that duty has fallen to veteran infielder Kevin Newman. Both have hit well of late, especially against left-handed pitchers.

Barrero has found some scattered playing time in the outfield, mainly as a platoon bat for either TJ Friedl or Jake Fraley when the Cincinnati Reds face a left-handed pitcher.

But, Barrero is slashing just .179/.281/.321 since becoming more of a fixture in the outfield in mid-May, and is only hitting .200 versus lefties on the season.

A trip to the Derby City seems almost imminent. With so many players ahead of him on the depth chart, and the need for everyday at-bats, Jose Barrero seems destined to be optioned to Triple-A Louisville.

Barrero needs to, at the very least, get more reps in the outfield and turn his splits around to be a viable option against left-handed pitching. Otherwise, his time, not just on the active roster, but with the club in general, could be coming to an end.

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