Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart is a veteran of numerous team caravans, including stops in his home state of Indiana. Back on the west leg for 2018 Reds Caravan, Barnhart has noticed things are a little different this time.
The 2018 version of the MLB Pipeline Top 100 prospects list was revealed on Saturday, and the best Reds prospect, third baseman Nick Senzel, is not far from the top.
The statistics can’t be changed from Reds lefty pitcher Amir Garrett’s rookie season. The good and bad are locked in. Although Garrett’s first few starts were sensational, he finished 3-8 with a 7.39 ERA and 1.61 WHIP in 16 games, including 14 starts.
As the busses warmed up outside on a chilly Thursday morning for the start of 2018 Reds Caravan, the group realized the patience it has preached to fans out on the road in recent years won’t be as bountiful after four straight losing seasons.
Top Reds prospect Nick Senzel is highly anticipating his first Spring Training in a big league camp. Senzel was already one of the earliest arrivals getting ready, having arrived at the team’s player-development complex in Goodyear, Ariz., a couple of weeks ago.
Former Reds third baseman Scott Rolen is statistically considered one of the top 10 players to ever play at the position but was widely viewed as a borderline Hall of Famer. For Rolen to become an actual member of the Hall of Fame, he will need a lot more votes.
Nick Senzel was an elite and highly anticipated prospect the moment the Reds selected him with the second overall pick in 2016. That latest accolade was revealed on Tuesday when Senzel was ranked as the No. 2 third baseman in the Minor Leagues by MLBPipeline.
Shed Long was drafted as a catcher and played behind the plate for his first two pro seasons before moving to the middle infield. In just a few years, the Reds’ prospect is ranked as one of the top second basemen in the Minor Leagues.
At Spring Training last year, the Reds lost two starting pitchers early to injury and before April was over, they had lost 4/5 of the rotation to the disabled list. Heading into camp for the upcoming season, manager Bryan Price was optimistic.
The Reds are calling this week’s workouts a “pitching summit.” While the term sounds like meeting of pitchers of different disciplines seeking to make peace and levy sanctions on rogue knuckleballers, manager Bryan Price’s vision is team building and unity.