Reds young talent excelling in Arizona Fall League

Reds prospect Ivan Johnson throws to first during the Tortugas opener at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in Daytona.
Reds prospect Ivan Johnson throws to first during the Tortugas opener at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in Daytona. / Nigel Cook/News-Journal via Imagn

The Cincinnati Reds sent several of their young, talented prospects to the Arizona Fall League, and a few are excelling with the extra work in the desert.

Cincinnati sent four pitchers, a pair of outfielders, and one of their top infield prospects to be part of the Surprise Saguaros.

Several Reds prospects are excelling in the AFL.

The biggest name among those who made the trip to Arizona this month was Michael Siani. One of the top outfield prospects in the organization, Siani seems to be adding hitting to the list of things the 22-year-old does well.

Siani, who's known more for his glove than his bat, has been mashing for the Saguaros. In 12 contests, Siani is hitting .333/.488/.515.

The Reds desperately need Siani to develop at the dish. Without any up-and-coming center field prospects to speak of, Siani is Cincinnati's best young prospect to fill the void in the middle of the outfield.

Ivan Johnson has been raking as well. One of the team's top infield prospects. Johnson has four homers in 10 games. Johnson has posted a .975 OPS in 34 at-bats this fall.

The question with Johnson is whether or not the former fourth-round pick will occupy shortstop or become a second baseman in the future. Johnson has the athleticism and the arm to make the plays at shortstop, but some scouts question if he'll stick there long-term.

Finally, Reds pitching prospect James Marinan has found success in Arizona as well. In 9.2 innings, the right-hander has struck out 11 batters and hasn't allowed a home run. Marinan's ERA in AFL play is sitting at 3.72.

Don't sleep on pitching prospects Michael Byrne and Jacques Pucheu either. Byrne hasn't allowed a run or a walk in four innings and has four punch outs and Pucheu hasn't allowed a runner to dent the plate through 6.1 innings of work.

Marinan and Byrnes are both Rule 5 eligible, though I'm not sure we should expect either right-hander to join the Cincinnati Reds 40-man roster this winter.

Next. Way-too-early Reds 2022 roster prediction. dark

It's good to see some of the Reds young talent making strides in the Arizona Fall League. Siani and Johnson are, no doubt, in Cincinnati's long-term plans.