This was originally published in The Athletic.
The Reds have had three different types of players over the last few seasons.
They’ve had players with little or no chance of being a part of the team’s future, even if they were significant figures of its past, but could be used to acquire young, less expensive help. These include Johnny Cueto, Todd Frazier, Jay Bruce, among many others.
They’ve had players who have either been projected to be a part of the franchise’s future or have performed well enough to be included in conversations about how the Reds will be constructed if they ever win again anytime soon. Luis Castillo, Jesse Winker, Eugenio Suárez, Raisel Iglesias and even Joey Votto fall into this category. Scooter Gennett, for now at least, might be in both groups.
Then there’s the third group: Dudes who are just filler. They fill roles and are often biding time for someone better and younger, rarely doing much to change the course of the team and never doing anything to advance the franchise’s larger overall mission.
Ross Ohlendorf. Scott Feldman. Asher Wojciechowski. Steve Delabar. Ivan DeJesus. Patrick Kivlehan. Those are just a few of the names. They were just filling out a uniform, helping the Reds kill some time while fulfilling the club’s mandate to carry the minimum number of players required to play baseball games. All are decent men, for sure, but none of them has been worth getting very attached to or worked up over. If they perform well, that’s great! If not, no biggie.
You’ll find Homer Bailey in this group these days.
To read more, go to The Athletic.