Predicting the Reds 2023 Opening Day outfield

Cincinnati Reds outfielder Will Benson
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Will Benson / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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Predicting the Reds 2023 Opening Day outfield: Will Benson (CF)

Will Benson was acquired from the Cleveland Guardians earlier this offseason in a trade that included 2022 draft pick Justin Boyd. Benson, a 2016 first-round pick, made his major league debut last season with Cleveland in limited action. 

Benson's output of production on the field last year was minimal. In just 55 at-bats, he only managed to put up a .182 average with just a .450 OPS. Benson was once considered the top outfield prospect in the Cleveland organization. Still, with the emergence of others like Steven Kwan and Will Brennan, along with the not-so-good showing last year, Benson was deemed replaceable by the Guardians. 

This spring, Benson has been turning heads. It is clear why the Cincinnati Reds front office was a fan. In 25 at-bats, the newly acquired lefty has hit .440 with a 1.000 OPS. His ability to hit to all fields, including his opposite-field power has been impressive to watch. Benson also includes an above-average defensive skill set that has looked good in center field this spring. 

With no real knowledge of when Nick Senzel will be ready, Benson came into spring with an opportunity to claim a lineup spot. There is a very good chance Senzel still starts the year on the IL. The question now has to be, even when healthy, is there spot for Senzel on this year's team?

Benson has done everything to deserve a chance at the starting position in the Reds outfield. After the second-round of roster cuts were made, players will start to get more and more at-bats during the game. Benson will have every opportunity during the rest of his time in Arizona to show the Reds front office that they were right to swing a deal for him.