It's happening, Reds fans. For all those throughout the Cincinnati Reds fanbase who've been clamoring to see Jonathan India moved to the outfield, it appears as though you'll get your wish.
According to Reds President of Baseball Operations Nick Krall, via Charlie Goldsmith of the Cincinnati Enquirer, India will work in the outfield as well as both first and second base heading into spring training next year.
This latest news should silence all the trade rumors surrounding India since the offseason began. Those rumors intensified after the Reds inked Jeimer Candelario to a three-year deal. But it now appears as though India will be given a chance to cut his teeth in the outfield.
Reds have effectively silenced trade rumors by moving Jonathan India to the outfield
In no way should Reds fans read more into this than is actually there. Jonathan India is not becoming a full-time outfielder, but this added responsibility will get him into the lineup on a regular basis - espeically against left handed pitching.
In fact, it's probably a good bet that the former first-round pick will see more time at first base than he will on the outfield grass. But this shift gives Cincinnati's even more flexibility heading into 2024.
Jake Fraley and Will Benson are likely to receive plenty of starts when a right-handed pitcher in the on the mound. But that won't be the case when the Cincinnati Reds square off against a southpaw.
Reds fans saw manager David Bell employ a right-handed heavy lineup when Cincinnati was opposed by a left-handed pitcher im 2023. Jonathan India can fill that Nick Senzel role heading into 2024, and line up in the outfield with TJ Friedl and Spencer Steer when the Reds face a lefty.
The position change will be an adjustment, and it may not even work. But at least the Reds are attempting to give themselves a tremendous advantage when it comes to playing the matchups.
If India is able to make the transition, fans will be talking about more than just his leadership qualities. This is the type of internal move that will allow the Cincinnati Reds to improve their pitching staff through free agency as well.
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