Reds add depth with Dietrich
By Steven Offenbaker
The Cincinnati Reds added depth to their bench and gave the front office some flexibility with the signing of 29-year-old Derek Dietrich to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training.
Dietrich has played in six big league seasons and has amassed a .254 batting average in 2132 plate appearances.
His numbers don’t tell the full story since he’s been playing in cavernous Marlin’s Park. As Redlegnation.com’s Steve Mancuso points out Dietrich’s road splits indicate he’s a much better hitter.
Dietrich has seen significant time at 1B, 2B, 3B, LF, and RF in his big-league career and offers the Reds solid bench depth since he would be able to enter the game in multiple positions. He also creates some roster flexibility for Cincinnati should a deal emerge for LF Matt Kemp, who increasingly looks to be the odd man out in a crowded Reds outfield, or 2B Scooter Gennett, who has recently gone public with his irritation at not being offered a contract extension.
Absent a deal to free up a roster spot Dietrich will be battling IF Alex Blandino to remain on the active roster. Blandino is recovering from offseason surgery and Dietrich will serve as insurance should he not be fully recovered by the start of the season.
While Dietrich is in camp on a minor league deal, we would receive $2 million for the 2019 season should the Reds decide to keep him on the active roster.