When the Cincinnati Reds were in need of some right-handed hitting in their heavily left-handed outfield mix last season, they called upon TJ Hopkins, a former 9th round pick who’d been absolute mashing for AAA Louisville. When I say mashing, I mean mashing, too, as his season total for the Bats was a robust .308/.411/.518 in 393 PA.
Things didn’t hit the ground running for TJ at the big league level, however. In spotty playing time he managed just 7 hits in 41 AB, striking out 17 times against just a pair of walks in his time. As it turns out, that ‘time’ was up for Hopkins when the Reds signed catcher Austin Wynns last week, as TJ was designated for assignment to free up the necessary spot on the 40-man roster. In the procedural amount of time since that move, the San Francisco Giants identified Hopkins as a player they’d like to have around, and on Tuesday it was announced the two clubs had struck a deal.
Hopkins has officially been dealt to the Giants for cash or a PTBNL, as San Francisco announced on Twitter.
The #SFGiants & Reds made a trade this morning with OF T.J. Hopkins joining the Giants organization in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations.— SFGiants (@SFGiants) December 19, 2023
Best of luck to TJ, who I hope will finally be one of the first out-of-the-blue hitters who mashed at Louisville to actually turn that into some big league success, breaking the mold of recent AAAA stars like Josh VanMeter and Aristides Aquino.