Projecting the Cincinnati Reds 2023 Opening Day roster 3.0

Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero
Cincinnati Reds shortstop Jose Barrero / Sam Greene/The Enquirer / USA TODAY
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We're less than two weeks away from the start of the 2023 baseball season. The World Baseball Classic is coming to a close and final roster cuts are on the horizon. So what might the Cincinnati Reds Opening Day roster look like?

For weeks now, several positions have been set in stone. However, there've been a handful of positions that have yielded some tight competition throughout the spring.

Gone is the likelihood of Christian Encarnacion-Strand opening the season with the Reds, or Elly De La Cruz hitting atop David Bell's lineup card on March 30th agains the Pittsburgh Pirates. But there are reasons for optimism heading in Reds Opening Day. So who are the 26 players that will break camp and head for Cincinnati next week?

Projecting the Cincinnati Reds 2023 Opening Day roster: Starting rotation (5)

Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo, Graham Ashcraft, Chase Anderson, Brandon Williamson

While every Reds fan knows that Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo, and Graham Ashcraft have been penciled in atop the Cincinnati rotation since the end of last season, little if anything has been certain when it comes to the final two spots.

Maybe this is wishful thinking, or simply seeing the results put forth this spring, but Brandon Williamson has done more than enough to lock up a spot in the Cincinnati Reds starting rotation heading into Opening Day.

In his last outing, the left-hander went four innings, allowed just two hits and struck out a pair while surrendering just one run. Throughout the spring, Williamson has logged 11 innings in five games and has 11 punch outs. There's really no reason to delay his major league debut any longer.

As for the fifth starter, this one becomes a tossup between Chase Anderson and Connor Overton. The veteran may have the advantage in this instance after Overton struggled mightily throughout the majority of camp.