Reds' search for right-handed hitting outfielder could be found through a trade

Free agency isn't the only way for the Reds to add another outfielder to the roster.
Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Manuel Margot
Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Manuel Margot / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

There is clamoring from the Cincinnati Reds fanbase for the team to pursue a right-handed hitting outfielder during the offseason.

It looks as though Nick Senzel's time in Cincinnati is nearing an end, and there are many within the Reds fanbase who don't see him as an outfielder anyway.

While a player like Teoscar Hernandez could be an attractive addition on the free agent market, signing the slugger will come with quite the price tag. Might the Reds look to acquire a right-handed hitting outfielder through a trade? If so, the Tampa Bay Rays may be shopping one of their own.

Reds' search for right-handed hitting outfielder could be found through a trade

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (subscription required), is reporting that the Tampa Bay Rays, in an effort to shed some payroll heading into 2024, could look to trade outfielder Manuel Margot.

Margot is well-regarded for his defense, and has historically performed well against left-handed pitching. According to FanGraphs, Margot has slash line of .281/.341/.420 with a wRC+ of 109 against southpaws.

Margot has also compiled 41 defensive runs saved during his career and is worth 57 outs above average. That type of defensive production cannot be ignored and, in a part-time role, Margot could excel as a platoon partner alongside Will Benson or Jake Fraley in the Reds outfield.

Manuel Margot is under contract through next season for $10-million, so it would be short-term commitment on the part of the Cincinnati Reds. Adding Margot would allow Blake Dunn and Rece Hinds to get more seasoning down in the minors before being called up to The Show.

After rumors emerged last week about the Reds' interest in Jeimer Candelario, one has to assume that Cincinnati's front office may be looking to upgrade more than just the pitching staff this winter.