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Cincinnati Reds links - Baseball America’s Top Prospects, Elly De La Cruz, & more

Thursday links!

San Diego Padres v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

No, of course the Cincinnati Reds haven’t signed anyone to a guaranteed big league contract lately. No, they haven’t traded for a ready-made big leaguer lately, either. In lieu of that - y’know, actual team-building for the upcoming season - we’ve got the following to talk about in Redsland today.

They might sign Johnny Cueto again, if every single one of the trillion-billion stars in the galaxy align and not one of the numerous teams out there who a) have money and b) are actually interest in winning baseball games in 2023 choose to give him an offer first. We covered that here.’s Mark Sheldon spoke with top Reds prospect Elly De La Cruz this week, as Elly is preparing for his first big league spring training in Goodyear, Arizona in right at two months. There are several interesting quotes from Mr. Electric, including him revealing a bit of a hierarchy of favorite positions he’d be willing to play.

Baseball America released their Top 10 Reds prospects today, and as usual it includes a ‘best tools’ list and a future starting lineup if everything were up to them. Let’s just say that Elly features prominently throughout, even his projected spot in the field for 2026 may open some eyes.

Over at FanGraphs, Ben Clemens gives some very insightful thoughts on why MLB teams have been doling out contracts at lengths rarely seen in the baseball world this year, looping in the ever-changing financial landscape as well as how MLB currently can penalize teams who spend more than others.

The Boston Red Sox have designated former Cincinnati Reds draftee Jeter Downs for assignment. The move was made to free up a roster spot for the newly signed Mastaka Yoshida. Downs, who went to the Dodgers in the massive Kyle Farmer Trade before being flipped to Boston in the Mookie Betts heist, has seen his bat fall completely apart in recent seasons, but at just 24 years of age surely still has some talent left in the tank that a club that has zero intentions of winning baseball games in the next 8-10 months could take a gamble on, right? Right?

I’m contemplating where to ride my hush-puppies on a big backpacking trip next summer. I’m down to a few finalists.

This one:

This one:

And this one:

There will likely be more finalists as things evolve. Hell, if the Reds continue to render the 2023 season as irrelevant and as uninteresting as possible, I might just go ahead and make plans to do multiple trips. It sure is easier to find time to wander into the woods and out of 5G when your favorite baseball club goes all Rip Van Winkle on you.