After the conclusion of World Series Game 6 with the Atlanta Braves defeating the Houston Astros, the time has come for the MLB offseason. The Braves have won their first World Series title since 1995. Just after one day of celebrating their title, other teams are beginning to strengthen their rosters for next year.
Kicking off the offseason, the Cincinnati Reds traded catcher Tucker Barnhart to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for Nick Quintana. Jon Heyman was the first to report the news via Twitter, where the media is all over the coverage. This trade can be very beneficial for both teams.
Barnhart’s owed 7.5 million will now be paid by the Detroit Tigers. Entering his age 31 season, Barnhart is coming off a strong season, where he hit .247 with 7 home runs and 48 RBI’s. After Tyler Stephenson’s breakout season for the Reds, just falling short of a Wild Card appearance, the Reds will look for a younger catcher to lead their squad. The two-time Gold Glove Award-winning catcher heads to a pitching staff that could use the benefits of a veteran catcher.
Stephenson will look to be the Reds starting catcher from 2022 and moving forward. Stephenson is coming off a great 2021 campaign, appearing in 132 games, hitting 10 home runs and 45 RBI’s. The former first-round pick in the 2015 Draft will finally get his chance to play every day with Barnhart gone. The Reds still have a lot to figure out, but seeing if they will be able to keep Nick Castellanos will remain one of their top priorities.
On the other hand, the Reds get a younger third base prospect in Nick Quintana. Quintana was drafted by the Tigers in the second round of the 2019 MLB Draft. Getting his first taste of Low-A ball, he struggled to get his average over .200. He batted .186 but hit 9 home runs and 47 RBI’s in 311 at-bats throughout the minor leagues this season. The Reds also have prospects Rece Hinds, and 2021 Draftee Matt McLain for the future of their infield, so it will be interesting to see where Nick Quintana can end up fitting in their plans. Quintana can also play shortstop, which can also make him a viable target during the 2022 MLB Trade Deadline.
The Tigers have a lot to do and plenty on their list for the offseason. They struck early and got their starting catcher in Tucker Barnhart for the 2022 campaign. Detroit also has catchers, Eric Haase and Jake Rogers on their roster, where they will look to split time with Barnhart for their starting catcher. Haase performed well in his first real season of work. After playing in 98 games during the 2021 season, Haase blasted 22 home runs, 61 RBI’s while only batting .231. In the case of the Tigers, they will look to use Barnhart as their primary catcher, and fill out the rest of their pieces to their puzzle accordingly.
With the rest of the offseason among us, there will be a lot of speculation and rumors surrounding what could potentially happen. Teams will look to be making more trades and signings within the upcoming weeks as the hot stove will begin to cook. With Barnhart in a new uniform, who else could be next to follow in joining a new team?