The Reds made the playoffs were bounced from the first round of the playoffs in a shortened 2020 regular season. The goal in 2021 is to make it further.
The Reds will be lead by first time general manager Nick Krall, after Dick Williams resigned.
“We had a very good pitching staff this year,” Krall said. “We’re going to lose some free agents. We’ve got to figure out a way to replace those innings and get quality innings. Offensively, we underperformed somewhat. There are some things we can work with to hopefully get our offense back on the right track and more consistent with what we can do.”
Cincinnati finished last in the Major Leagues with a .212 batting average, despite adding three big bats of Mike Moustakas, Nick Castellanos, and Shogo Akiyama last offseason. During their elimination in the National League Wild Card Series, they were held scoreless over all 22 innings. The team relied on the home run all season with a record of 61.1 percent of all runs scored on homers. Their average of .245 on balls in play was also ranked last in the MLB. Krall and manager David Bell would like to get base hits and advance runners more often.
Jose Garcia impressed with his defense after moving up two levels of play and making his MLB debut last season over veteran Freddy Galvis. But Garcia was offensively overchallenged, and the Reds returned to Galvis for the postseason, and he is now a free agent. Andrelton Simmons is the top free agent shortstop, but the Reds could consider trading for Francisco Lindor for a one year rental.
Last season Trevor Bauer won the first ever NL CY Young award for the Reds. But he rejected the qualifying offer of $18.9 million quickly in the offseason, but did state he enjoyed pitching for Cincinnati. Anthony DeSclafani is also a free agent and Krall may have to replace two of the starting rotation. Free agents Masahiro Tanaka and James Paxton are available if they look externally. Internal options include Michael Lorenzen, Tyler Mahle, and Tejay Antone.
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