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Ever since the Cincinnati Reds lost the National League Wild Card Game to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2013, the Reds have missed the playoffs every year ever since and they haven't had a .500 record or better. Cincinnati's record so far in 2018 is 48-60 and they are 14.5 games back of the Chicago Cubs for first place in the NL Central.
The Reds have some very good bats currently in their lineup, but they don't have very good pitching. Jim Riggleman is the current Reds manager. He became the manager when Bryan Price was fired in the beginning of the season. Riggleman is 65 years old and if the Reds continue to play decent baseball, they might keep him around.
However, players in the Cincinnati Reds farm system have potential to be very good. They have a ton of upside and the Reds could be back in the postseason by 2020 or 2021.
Nick Senzel is the top prospect in the Reds farm system and the fourth best prospect in baseball. He plays third base and second base. Senzel's season ended early because of a finger injury. He was the second overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft. Nick Senzel is 23 years old. He only played in 44 games in Triple-A with the Louisville Bats, but will it be enough for the Reds to be convinced that he will be on the opening day roster in 2019 or will he be back in the minors getting reps? They could move Eugenio Suarez to shortstop and put Senzel at third base. Scotter Gennett is the second baseman and he doesn't play another position. Jose Pereza is the current Reds shortstop. He is 24 years old and Pereza will be a free agent at the end of the season. They may not re-sign him, but the Reds could keep him around as a utility player. Nick Senzel's batting average was .310 with six home runs and 25 RBI's, along with eight stolen bases. His on-base percentage is .378. Once he gets to the majors, Nick Senzel will be a everyday player.
Right-handed pitcher Hunter Greene is the second best prospect in the Cincinnati Reds farm system and he is the 18th best prospect in baseball. He is 18 years old and was the second overall pick in the 2017 MLB Draft. When Greene was drafted, he was drafted to be a pitcher and an infielder, but Hunter Greene will be a pitcher in the long run and he has a high ceiling. Greene throws in the high 90's and he can reach 100 with ease. Greene has a slider and if he can develop an effective changeup, Hunter Greene has the ceiling to be a number one starter. He is currently playing for Single-A Dayton Dragons. Greene is projected to reach the majors in 2021. His record is 3-7 with a 4.48 ERA. In 68.1 innings pitched, he has given up 66 hits and 35 runs. Hunter Greene has walked 23 batters and has struck out 89.
Outfielder Taylor Trammell is the third best prospect in Cincinnati's farm system and he is the 19th best prospect in baseball. Trammell is 20 years old and he is projected to reach the majors in 2020. Trammell will be a starting outfielder when he gets to the majors because the Reds starting outfield isn't deep. He was taken 35th overall in the 2016 MLB Draft. Taylor Trammell is currently playing for High-A Daytona Tortugas. His batting average is .278 with eight home runs and 33 RBI's, along with 18 stolen bases. Trammell's on-base percentage is .375. He will be a two or a three hitter at the major league level.
Third baseman Jonathan India is the fourth best prospect in their farm system and he is the 56th best prospect in baseball. India was drafted fifth overall in the 2018 MLB Draft. This was an interesting draft pick because I thought the Reds were going to draft a pitcher. They felt he was the best player available. The Cincinnati Reds do have Nick Senzel and Eugenio Suarez ahead of him at the moment. India is 21 years old and is projected to reach the majors in 2021. He can move through the minor leagues quickly. India crushes the ball and he is a good fielder. Jonathan India is currently playing for Single-A Dayton Dragons. His batting average is .267 with three home runs and 13 RBI's, along with one stolen base. India's on-base percentage is .443.
Right-handed pitcher Tony Santillan is the fifth best prospect in the Reds farm system. He was a second-round pick in the 2015 MLB Draft. Santillan is 21 years old and he is projected to reach the majors in 2020. Santillan has the possibility to be a top two starter in the rotation at the MLB level because of his fastball velocity and his changeup. He is currently playing in Double-A for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos. His record is 10-4 with a 2.48 ERA. In 116 innings pitched, Tony Santillan has given up 109 hits and 37 runs. He has walked 29 batters and has struck out 105.
Catcher Tyler Stephenson is the sixth best prospect in the Cincinnati Reds farm system. He has the potential to be in multiple all-star games one day. Stephenson hits for good average, power, and drives in runs. He is also a very good defensive catcher. Tyler Stephenson is 21 years old and he is projected to reach the majors in 2020. Tucker Barnhart and Curt Casali are the current catchers on the roster. Stephenson should have no problem being the everyday catcher when he reaches the major leagues. He is currently playing for High-A Daytona Tortugas. His batting average is .276 with 10 home runs and 51 RBI's, along with one stolen base. His on-base percentage is .357.
Shortstop/second baseman Jeter Downs is the seventh best prospect in Cincinnati's farm system. He is 20 years old and Downs was the 32nd overall pick in the 2017 MLB Draft. He is versatile and Downs will be useful for the Reds in the future, if he is not traded. Jeter Downs is currently playing for Single-A Dayton Dragons. His batting average is .262 with 11 home runs and 40 RBI's, along with 29 stolen bases. Downs's on-base percentage is .348. He is projected to reach the majors 2021. Jeter Downs is a possible future lead off hitter and he also possess pop in his bat.
Right-handed pitcher Vladimir Gutierrez is the ninth-best prospect in their farm system. He is 22 years old and Gutierrez is projected to reach the majors in 2019. He throws three quality pitches in the fastball, curveball, and changeup. That will allow him to be successful in getting batters out. Gutierrez will most likely be a starting pitcher at the major league level. He will most likely be a three or a four starter. Vladimir Gutierrez is currently playing for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos in Double-A. His record is 8-9 with a 4.33 ERA. In 114.1 innings pitched, he has given up 108 hits and 58 runs. Gutierrez has walked 31 batters and has struck out 113.
For more information on the Cincinnati Reds prospects, visit MLB.com and click on the players tab and search top prospects.