Way-too-early Cincinnati Reds 2023 Opening Day roster predictions

Cincinnati Reds infielder Jonathan India
Cincinnati Reds infielder Jonathan India / Joe Puetz/GettyImages
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The Cincinnati Reds 2022 season did not go as planned. The Reds traded away some fan favorites and finished below .500 for the first time in two years.

But the organization was able to restock the farm system and the future looks bright for the ole Redlegs heading into next season. It may be 2024 before the club actually fields a competitive team, able to make a push for the postseason, but next year's squad should be better than what the Cincinnati faithful witnessed in 2022.

Injuries decimated the Reds in 2022 and that's something that the fanbase could certainly do without in 2023. Let's take a way-too-early look at what the Cincinnati Reds 2023 Opening Day roster might look like.

Cincinnati Reds 2023 Opening Day starting lineup (9)

Joey Votto (1B), Jonathan India (2B), Kyle Farmer (3B), Matt McLain (SS), Stuart Fairchild (RF), TJ Friedl (CF), Jake Fraley (LF), Tyler Stephenson, (C), Spencer Steer (DH)

Right off the bat, there's no doubt that a good portion of Reds Country will have a problem with Matt McLain on the Opening Day roster. That's fair, as the former first-round pick has yet to play above Double-A.

But the Reds have a lot of depth at shortstop, so Jose Barrero will have his work cut out for him if he's looking to retain his spot in the starting lineup. Look for former first-round pick Matt McLain to push Barrero during spring training and win he job outright.

Reds fans shouldn't see too many surprises elsewhere. If healthy, both Joey Votto and Tyler Stephenson should return to their respective positions. Jonathan India isn't going anywhere despite his sub-par defensive numbers in 2022.

Where does Kyle Farmer fit on next year's team? For now, it's probably safe to assume that the veteran will see time all over the diamond, but Farmer played well at third base. Farmer will likely share time with Spencer Steer who'll need a good showing during spring training in order to secure more playing time.

Both TJ Friedl and Jake Fraley showed enough during the latter-part of the 2022 season to warrant consideration for a starting spot on Cincinnati's 2023 roster. But both may also be part of a platoon with a right-handed hitting outfielder.

Unless the Reds front office makes an upgrade to the outfield through a trade or free agency during the offseason Stuart Fairchild may be in the outfield on Opening Day. The right-handed hitting outfielder would be a fine platoon partner for either Friedl or Fraley next season, but the Reds need to address the outfield in someway during the offseason.