Each Monday morning, we’ll ask a few of our authors and friends of the site to answer an important question concerning the Reds.

Question: How about that Nick Senzel?

Ashley Davis: Nick Senzel is going to be the next Joey Votto. Ok, maybe I’m getting a little ahead of myself. He’s played three games. But from what I’ve seen so far, similarities abound between him and Votto, starting with the fact that both players were 23 at the time of their debut. Don’t mind the people saying Senzel didn’t get as many minor league at-bats as players like Votto, Jay Bruce, Vladimir Guerrero Jr, or Fernando Tatis Jr. They forget that Senzel played in the SEC conference for three years before being drafted, while the others were drafted right out of high school.

Senzel is ready. It was evident in his plate discipline this weekend. He worked deep counts, drew walks, showed his opposite field power, and even made a couple nice catches in center field. It’s going to be a fun summer watching him play. He will struggle at times, because it’s baseball, but this weekend proved that he’s going to be in Cincinnati for a long time if he keeps doing what he’s doing.

Mary Beth Ellis: I am endlessly impressed with Nick Senzel for not constantly puking where he stood. That poor hombre had every conceivable form of recording device in his face all the way up I-71.  His ability to not only retain his lunch, but to actually generate offense where his far more experienced teammates have failed for a month, makes him my new fixture of awe.

Doug Gray: How about Nick Senzel is right. I’ve written so many words about him over the last three years since he was drafted, so I’ll keep that part short: We all expect big things from him based on what his history has told us. And so far through the weekends games, there’s no reason to think differently. Sure, it’s just three games, but he’s shown a lot in that sample. He’s shown off his speed on the bases and in the field. He’s shown power, hitting an opposite field homer and then being robbed of another one to dead center. The plate discipline has been quite strong and he works the counts well. He’s just the kind of hitter the lineup needs and he’s not going anywhere for a while. I’ve been ready for the Senzel era to begin for quite a while here in Cincinnati. It’s great that it’s finally here. Buckle up and enjoy the ride.

Wes Jenkins: Nick Senzel…I mean just what is there to say? He’s no Vlad Jr. that’s for sure. That fraudulent King in the North has only hit .192 with a .231 slugging? What kind of top prospect hits like that? This kid, Nick Senzel, he’s the real deal. Already slugging .625 with a .455 on-base percentage, and those could’ve been better if Kevin Pillar had just tripped or mistimed the robbery or generally not been bitten by a radioactive spider. No matter, our prospect, the true king prospect, has put Vlad Jr. to shame. Sure, he didn’t hit the four consecutive home run even though he could have yesterday, but not all of us can be Derek Dietrich.

30 Responses

  1. Pete

    I’m greedy, I now want to see what what Josh Vanmeter is going to bring to the party. Really like this team’s makeup, we’re getting there but setbacks of this weekend cleverly disguise the fruits Reds fans are soon to enjoy.

    • Doc

      They are ready to take off, as soon as the manager gets out of the way. I think the 25 players could huddle as a committee and come up with a better game management. Or maybe a committee of position players and one of bullpen. Let the manager deal with paperwork, from an office somewhere not in the dugout.

      • Pete

        If the team is still struggling going into June, I will begin to be greatly concerned. Bell is a newbie and as long as he processes any lessons he is learning I believe this team will be very good this summer.

      • TR

        Game manager to the administrator in a corner office.

    • ToBeDetermined

      Pete
      me too on Vanmeter.
      With the lefty going today, I don’t know he didn’t play yesterday and Peraza today. But, hey what do I know ?

  2. Klugo

    The future is here. This kid is the real deal.

  3. matthew hendley

    Very impressed. Kid got all of his firsts out the way in a hurry. Generally a good sign. Does not look overwelmed in center either. CF of the future has arrived.

  4. matthew hendley

    lineup posted:
    1. Senzel
    2. Votto
    3. Suarez
    4. Puig
    5. Farmer 2B
    6. Iggy
    7. Casali
    8. Peraza LF
    9. Disco

    Now its a LHP, so I understand home run DD sitting at least until we get into the bullpen, but seriously, Peraza in Left? Will it never stop? JVMR could have gotten the start there. Another Winker sit although I can see that as a day off as well. Management still not seriously trying to win.

    • Pete

      I believe they are still trying to work things out. Try to be patient, although I know it is difficult. Would rather have seen DD batting second and playing first base. Perhaps if Votto only played five days a week his numbers might improve.

      Winker is young and shouldn’t require a day off. Still plenty of fire power in the lineup. Hopefully today is the first day of a long winning streak. It’s coming but sooner is preferable to later.

    • WVRedlegs

      Votto is only LH hitter in the lineup. All the lefties on the bench in Winker, Dietrich, Barnhart and VanMeter. Peraza in LF is just ridiculous. Fans are quickly starting to tire on David Bell and his nonsense. I would bet that his approval rating today would be in the low 30’s percentage, or even the high 20’s. Dick Williams and the front office’s approval ratings have to be even lower. In the 3+ seasons (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019) Dick Williams has been the GM and now POBO, he has steadily moved the Reds from last place to … um, last place !!! Cue the Benny Hill music.

      • Wayne nabors

        Winker and detrich both on bench today,I definitely think its safe to say we’re tireing on him,he’s solely responsible for at least 3 losses by now if not more,he definitely owns Friday’s debacle

    • TR

      Lefty or not, both Winker and Dietrich should be in starting lineup.

      • matthew hendley

        Detrich is notoriously platoon worthy. I do get that one. Your right about winker though.

    • Rich H

      I for one have not lost confidence in the coaching staff or the front office, since the changes this offseason.

      Didn’t you guys want something different from the last four years? The off-season moves they made are different. Releasing Kemp, with all that money owed, is different. Moving players around the diamond, focusing on statistical matchups is what teams like the Cubs and Dodgers do. The bullpen usage mimics what good teams do. And I’ll tell you this much, Sonny Gray and Tanner Roark are really good acquisitions, but they sure as heck don’t take a pitching staff from bottom 5 to top 5 in baseball.

      This whining about Bell over-managing is generally nonsense, in my opinion. You can’t expect something different unless you try something different, and they are.

      You can’t seriously look at this team’s massive pitching improvement and NOT give the FO (SP acquisitions) and coaching staff (in game decisions) credit. I also don’t think you can really blame them for the entire lineup not hitting for a month, although I can see trying to adjust to a modern hitting philosophy taking some time. What Turner Ward produced in LA, Derek Johnson produced in Milwaukee, and realizing this manager is feeling out players and trying to change the culture from four awful seasons, I think things are way brighter than what a bunch of yahoos sit around and grumble about.

      • matthew hendley

        I have a used car to sell you.

        you talk about what the Dodgers and cubs do. They don’t play bad players. When Kyle Schwarber was sucking, where did he go? Iowa City, or wherever their triple A is. Peraza should have been in LOU a week ago.
        Teams with top 5 Pitching rotations have lost games on the regular (Boston) and poor rotations have won on the regular (OAK). What you don’t do is attempt to fix something that isn’t broken. Now the PS has improved, including the internal holdovers and I will give credit to the new Pitching coach. But when EVERY hitter goes down at the same time (on a team that actually did not have an issue with hitting last year) then there is a problem with the coaching there. Even a blind man can see that. You can already see that the players are reverting back to their more confortable swings and getting results.
        The Team has improved. However it would improve more with less interference and more competence from Bell. Many of the tools we have this year will not be back next year.

      • Rich H

        They sent Schwarber down in mid or late June. What did they do with Heyward last year? You can’t just send down a young promising player after showing some really good signs last year after a month. Schebler is 28 and probably never going to be more than a platoon or fourth outfielder on a good team; Peraza is 24 and could be a good starting shortstop on a good team. There is a difference.

        The last two years under Turner Ward, the Dodgers ranked 4th and 3rd in OPS+ while the Reds ranked 16th and 20th, respectively. Even a blind man can see which one is better. And Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp, who were in that system, both started incredibly slowly for the Reds this year. Many peripheral stats showing reasons for the Reds slow offensive start are all completely counter to what Ward produced in LA, so I’m not sure how you can break that down entirely to a philosophical change. Sometimes guys just start slow. And sometimes people just want to complain about things.

      • matthew hendley

        Peraza will barely be a serviceable defensive replacement. It is obvious that he should have been traded after last seasons aberration to address needs. Horrendous at the plate and has lost his starting job 3 separate times now. Incidently the DOdgers Improved at the plate after Ward left. That should tell you something as well. Bell needed and still needs to win the games that need to be won. like Friday and yesterday. Fool me once…. fool me twice. And over the span of 3 days as well. FO has made some good moves I will give you that. David Bell was not one of them.

  5. Ghettotrout1

    I am actually really starting to get concerned that Votto is not ever going to be anywhere near is past self. Last season and now a little over a month of this season. Someone calm me down and tell me he will be the old Votto again.

    • Klugo

      Happens every yr. He’s a hard, conscientious worker. He’ll get there.

      • Pete

        Even if he ends up being a shadow of his former self, there should be enough value there that he can be an asset to the team. It may be a far more limited role than any of us have been accustomed to. At this point, it’s still too early to say as you suggest but it warrants keeping an eye on.

  6. Chris Holbert

    Votto’s bat seems slow, and his Ks are way up. 5 RBI from the 1B position, a position needed for run production on a MLB team, is not enough. His elite, and maybe very good, days are behind him. They are hung with that contract, so there is that, it is going to be difficult for the organization to move in that direction, but if they truly believe in what’s best for winning, there is more production elsewhere. Rank 19th overall, 13th in OBP, 22th in SLG, 21 in OPS

  7. jreis

    the fact that Senzel can play a good centerfield is huge for this organization and gives us a lot of options now with Scooter.
    next year for the first time in decades the reds will have a log jam in the outfield with Siri, Tramell , Winker and Possibly Puig. I would definitely like to see Winker get some playing time at first base as he seems like the best candidate to replace Votto in the future. But overall, I think finally there are going to be exciting days at gabp in the near future!

  8. Chris Holbert

    They said on the pregame show, DB stated Peraza will be spelling all three outfield spots..maybe they should go bring Ervin up for that…

  9. Brian Jolley

    Based on his play so far, do you think the prophetic front office was correct in its thinking that Nick is indeed ready for the big leagues, or do you think he still needs some seasoning to be up to Schebler level both offensively and defensively?

    • matthew hendley

      you know the answer to that, service time, service time, service time and seeing the results I am glad we got the extra year.

  10. Brian S Jolley

    With so many one run losses and Schebler relief pitcher like stats at the plate, one wonders what the Reds record would have been with Nick in the line up instead all year.

  11. CI3J

    Well, that’s a unique stat…. Van Meter’s first MLB AB led to a HBP RBI on a single pitch.

    That can’t have happened often.

    • matthew hendley

      I don’t think it counts as an at bat. I think it is a plate appearance. I may be wrong

  12. Brian S Jolley

    That was his second plate appearance and still no AB.