With Kyle Farmer off the roster, Reds shortstop Jose Barrero has a golden opportunity

Kyle Farmer, Jose Barrero, Cincinnati Reds
Kyle Farmer, Jose Barrero, Cincinnati Reds / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

The Cincinnati Reds traded Kyle Farmer to the Minnesota Twins on Friday. In a separate deal, Cincinnati swung a deal for Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop Kevin Newman.

Reds GM Nick Krall has said that finding a spot next year's roster will be an open competition for several positions. Outside of Joey Votto, Tyler Stephenson, and Jonathan India, no one has a secure spot in the starting lineup.

But with Farmer out of the way, former top prospect Jose Barrero has a golden opportunity to prove that he can be part of the Reds organization over the long haul.

Reds shortstop Jose Barrero has a golden opportunity.

There is no other way to describe Jose Barrero's 2022 performance than atrocious. Barrero, who was assumed to be in competition with Kyle Farmer for the starting shortstop job last spring, needed wrist surgery and missed the first two months of the season.

That halted Barrero's progress from the 2021 season; one in which he was named the Cincinnati Reds Minor League Player of the Year. Barrero received a call-up to the big leagues late in 2021 and was moved all over the field.

After Brandon Drury was traded to the San Diego Padres in August, the Reds moved Farmer to third base and finally gave Barrero a consistent, uninterrupted opportunity to play shortstop. But Barrero flopped in a big way. The 24-year-old hit just .152/.195/.206 and struck out 76 times.

Barrero has the speed, athleticism, and arm strength to play shortstop at the big league level, but if he can't hit above .250 and cut his strikeout-rate in half, his future in Major League Baseball will be over rather quickly.

Kevin Newman was brought in as an insurance policy in the event Jose Barrero fails to live up the lofty expectations heaped upon him. The Cincinnati Reds also have Matt McLain and Elly De La Cruz waiting in the wings.

Barrero has a golden opportunity this spring to snag the starting shortstop job and never look back. If Barrero plays up to his potential, there's no telling what the future will hold. However, the Reds have several contingencies in place in the event that Barrero fails to impress.

Next. 3 Reds players who could replace Kyle Farmer at 3B. dark