2024 Cincinnati Reds Top 15 prospects

by Chris Blessing

Organization Grades

Hitting: B+ ... Pitching: B ... Top-end Talent: B ... Depth: B+ ... Overall: B+


Minor League Affiliates

Triple-A: Louisville (AAA East)
Double-A: Chattanooga (AA South)
High-A: Dayton (A+ Central)
Low-A: Daytona (A Southeast)
Rookie: ACL Reds (Arizona Complex League)
Rookie: DSL Reds (Dominican Summer League)


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1. Noelvi Marte (3B,SS) ... 6-0, 216 ... R/R ... 22 ... 2018 FA (DR)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022Dayton Dragons (Midw2)106.292/.397/.44314780.744/10
2023ACL Reds (ACL)9.222/.300/.22210891.000/0
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)196.281/.356/.46410810.588/10
2023Louisville Bats (IL2)143.280/.365/.45512780.653/8
2023Cincinnati Reds (NL)114.316/.366/.4567780.323/6

Comments: Muscular IF elevated prospect stock by improving frequency of hard contact, earning MLB debut. Developed physique, near physical projection. Open stance with bat wiggle and minimal load. Unleashes swing with plus-plus bat speed on linear swing plane. EV rates and frame suggest plus power. Presently, too much topspin-heavy contact. Plus runner.

Development Path: Marte's cup of coffee in the big leagues went as well as expected. He is in line to be the Reds' Opening Day 3B.

Fantasy Impact: Marte improved greatly over last off-season, gaining flexability, added speed and a more direct bat path to the ball. This lead to a monster breakout season for a prospect who was already well thought of previously. The power is still blooming and might take some time. Presently, it's an above-average hit tool to go with potentially plus power and plus speed. It's a fantasy manager's dream at the hot corner.

Upside Grade: 9C


2. Rhett Lowder (RHP) ... 6-2, 220 ... 22 ... 2023 (1) Wake Forest

2023Did Not Play (--) 

Comments: Near-ready, athletic hurler was drafted after stellar career at Wake Forest. Athletic frame, near projection. Repeatable 3/4s delivery with solid extension. Varies between FB; 4-seamer has an above-average ride profile, playing up due to command. Each secondary pitch is whiff-inducing. Late-fading CU is ahead of SL with late vertical action.

Development Path: Lowder went 15-0 in his junior year at Wake Forest; he has not make his pro debut. He should move quickly through the minor leagues. There's a 50/50 shot he starts at Double-A Chattanooga. Otherwise, it would be High-A Dayton.

Fantasy Impact: There isn't much projection left for Lowder, who should be the Reds SP3 sometime during the 2025 season. The FB is efficient and performs like an MLB pitch. The secondaries give him the swings and misses. This is a high floor profile (SP4) with an upside only a tick higher (SP3).

Upside Grade: 8C


3. Edwin Arroyo (SS) ... 6-0, 175 ... B/B ... 20 ... 2021 (2) HS (PR) 

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022ACL Reds (ACL)6.000/.222/.00025671.000/2
2022Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)97.227/.303/.3818680.291/4
2022Modesto Nuts (Cal2)364.316/.385/.5149750.3913/21
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)475.248/.321/.4279760.4313/28
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)17.353/.400/.5886650.170/1

Comments: Athletic, switch-hitting SS put together solid season at advanced levels. Lean build with room to grow. Wide open stance with hands back. Minimal load. More contact and better approach from LH side. From RH side, more power potential with better leverage for uppercut swing. Defensively skilled. Above-average run tool plays up due to headiness.

Development Path: Arroyo's bat wasn't quite what it was in the California League in 2022. However, it showed enough promise in High-A to earn a late Double-A callup. He'll return to Double-A to start 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Arroyo has average-to-above offensive potential across the board. It's a high floor prospect, given his ability to play a plus SS. However, there is concerns with his ability to his for BA and get to the sort of pop that will make him a viable fantasy option at a strong position.

Upside Grade: 8C


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4. Blake Dunn (OF) ... 6-0, 210 ... R/R ... 25 ... 2021 (15) Western Michigan

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2021Western Michigan (MAC)59.305/.425/.57618750.874/3
2022ACL Reds (ACL)13.077/.143/.0777770.330/2
2022Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)93.290/.468/.49521690.834/18
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)163.276/.411/.46011720.468/19
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)295.332/.433/.55612720.4915/35

Comments: Older prospect, finally healthy, had true breakout campaign in 2023. Premium athlete, near physical projection. Plus-plus runner with great first step. Simple batting setup with minimal load, works counts. Above-average bat speed propels uppercut swing to loft. Pull-oriented approach, plays up average power. Potential 20 HR/30 SB bat.

Development Path: Dunn absolutely dominated in 2023 and got better as the season wore on and the competition toughened. Dunn is ready for Triple-A and will likely debut in 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Dunn's 23 HR, split between the Midwest League and Double-A Chattanooga, is impressive. Throw in his OBP skills, high BA and plus-plus speed, Dunn looks like a fantasy stud. While he's obviously being dinged for being "Old for league," watching him day in and day out, he looked the part of a legit prospect. With continued help, Dunn could be a fantasy asset.

Upside Grade: 8D


5. Carlos Jorge (2B,OF) ... 5-10, 160 ... L/R ... 20 ... 2021 FA (DR)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2021Dominican Reds (Dsl)159.346/.436/.57913800.753/27
2022ACL Reds (ACL)119.261/.405/.52917660.617/27
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)298.295/.400/.48314770.679/31
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)88.239/.277/.3985660.173/1

Comments: Athletic on-base machine was one of the best hitters in Low-A. Twitchy, short-statured frame. Upright, open stance with minimal load to hit position. Short levers allow for compact swing. Aggressive approach but ends up in deep counts due to plus hand/eye skills. Below-average power in bat and swing but shoots gaps for XBH. Plus runner.

Development Path: Jorge tired as the season wore on and struggled during his High-A promotion. He'll likely head to Dayton to start 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Jorge's last 23 games in Dayton dropped his career OBP below .400. His ability to get on-base and swipe some bags is carrying his fantasy profile. If he can get to respectable power numbers, in the 15+ range, this bat could get to a solid average outcome.

Upside Grade: 8D


6. Sal Stewart (2B,3B) ... 6-3, 215 ... R/R ... 20 ... 2022 (1) HS (FL) 

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022ACL Reds (ACL)24.292/.393/.45814790.800/0
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)316.269/.395/.42417811.1210/10
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)110.291/.397/.39114841.002/5

Comments: Hitability 3B prospect enjoyed solid season in lower minors. Strong build, close to physical projection. Upright, slight open stance. Minimal load and easy swing mechanics lead to high ct%. Opposite field gap approach. Linear swing plane with above-average bat speed. Could get to average power with more pull contact and continued high EV rates.

Development Path: Stewart's slow start in Low-A dampens some of his numbers. However, his work from June 1st on at both A-ball levels showed he has an advanced feel for hitting. The Reds will likely have Stewart start in High-A with a Double-A Chattanooga promotion in the cards during the 2nd half.

Fantasy Impact: Stewart is a BA and OBP play with his upside being determined by how much HR power he can get to. If he can get to 20-25 HR power, it's a solid regular bat at the hot corner. There is a risk that he loses some athleticism and must move across the diamond to 1B, which will put more pressure on his bat to perform. 

Upside Grade: 8D


7. Connor Phillips (RHP) ... 6-2, 190 ... 22 ... 2020 (2) McLennan CC

2022Dayton Dragons (Midw2)64.02.951.1094.512.72.8.169
2022Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)45.24.931.7966.711.81.8.259
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)64.23.341.3143.815.44.1.230
2023Louisville Bats (IL2)40.14.691.5626.
2023Cincinnati Reds (NL)20.26.971.5005.711.32.0.225

Comments: High 3/4s RHP with premium stuff struggled in big league debut due to command and control. Athletic delivery with frame near physical projection. 4-seam FB has flat approach angle and achieves significant riding action late. FB command varies from start to start. SL has significant sweep with late downward action. 12-to-6 CB has average upside.

Development Path: Phillips will likely battle for a spot in the Reds rotation, despite struggling during a late call up. He'll need to refine his command/control to be trusted every 5th day. Otherwise, he'll be in Triple-A.

Fantasy Impact: Phillips is a stuff-driven pitcher. The FB is electric, one of the best FB to debut last season. Often, he'll lose the zone or let the pitch bleed down, which is a bad thing since his movement profile worsens when it's located down. The SL is only a tool if the FB is doing its thing. Long term, he's likely a late inning pen arm. For now, we'll keep him a SP.

Upside Grade: 8D


8. Chase Petty (RHP) ... 6-1, 190 ... 20 ... 2021 (1) HS (NJ) 

2021FCL Twins (Rk_FCL)5.05.401.4001.810.86.0.286
2022Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)
2022Dayton Dragons (Midw2)30.24.401.1092.
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)60.01.951.2002.
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)

Comments: Former 1st round pick has molded into complete pitcher at relatively young age. Athletic, low 3/4s delivery. Relies heavily on SL-heavy arsenal; it's a tight, two-plane breaker mostly. Can manipulate grip to get additional break. 2-seam FB has sinker characteristics with plus armside run. Has feel for near-plus CU. Commands everything well.

Development Path: Petty missed time to start the 2023 season with an arm issue and made it up for a start at Double-A Chattanooga. He was on a strict innings and pitch count too. He'll likely head back out to Chattanooga to start 2024.

Fantasy Impact: When Minnesota drafted Petty, he was a pure power arm projection. He has refined into an advanced pitcher with better off-speed pitches than his once high velocity FB. The next step in development is improving the FB, likely adding a 4-seam variation. Right now, the secondaries carry the profile but this could be a big arm for the future with a better FB.

Upside Grade: 8D


9. Alfredo Duno (C) ... 6-2, 210 ... R/R ... 18 ... 2023 FA (VZ)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2023Dominican Reds (Dsl)152.303/.451/.49320730.936/6

Comments: Strong, teenaged C prospect succeeded expectations during pro debut. Developed frame with minimal room for growth. Solid athlete with good, reported agility. Power-driven hit tool is a solid foundation. Will need to sharpen up pre-swing movement. Uppercut trajectory swing with solid angles for lofted contact. Should stick behind plate. 

Development Path: Duno, who was slowed by arm soreness, only DH'd during Dominican Summer League games. The bat proved too much for the level. He'll be coming to America in 2024. The bat is advanced enough for a full season debut with Low-A Daytona.

Fantasy Impact: Duno is an impressive bat with an advanced feel for the zone and a power-driven approach. His physical strength and swing mechanics are apt at getting to hard contact of the lofted variety. If he catches, which evaluators seem to think he will, this is a monster bat for a weaker offensive position. This isn't a catch only bat or a catch only defender. If arm issues persist, he is athletic enough to adjust to another position.

Upside Grade: 9E


10. Cam Collier (3B) ... 6-2, 210 ... L/R ... 19 ... 2022 (1) Chipola

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022Chipola (NJCAA)177.333/.297/.53712810.768/5
2022ACL Reds (ACL)27.370/.514/.63021781.172/0
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)390.246/.349/.35613730.546/5

Comments: Strong-bodied teenaged CIF prospect backed up physically, struggling in first full season as pro. Strong body with risk of XXL frame. Open stance at plate. Lots of movement to get to load. Long linear swing produced loads of groundball contact. Plus bat speed remains. With swing adjustments, can get back to above-average power/hit projections.

Development Path: Collier struggled for long stretches of his 2023 season at Low-A. He'll need to commit to righting the ship physically and work on his athleticism. It's likely a High-A start to his 2024 season.

Fantasy Impact: Collier's body went the way some scouts thought it would in his late 20s—but not during his age 18 season. The lost athleticism put doubt in whether he'll handle 3B long term. Patience is warranted with such a young prospect. There's enormous power potential Collier can tap into soon, even if he doesn't get to premium loft. 

Upside Grade: 8D


11. Hector Rodriguez (OF) ... 5-10, 186 ... L/R ... 20 ... 2020 FA (DR)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022ACL Reds (ACL)25.400/.464/.7201110000/3
2022FCL Mets (FCL)106.349/.381/.5475910.603/12
2022St. Lucie Mets (FSL2)7.143/.250/.1431310000/0
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)410.293/.347/.5106800.3216/18
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)51.294/.309/.3732800.100/0

Comments: Twitchy and athletic with hitability, he flashed power out of nowhere in 2023. Lean build with surprising strength; a simple, flat swing with minimal wasted movement that gets to hard contact frequently. Power entirely to pull side, though will also spray the ball. Plus runner but doesn't get good reads. Struggles with routes in CF.

Development Path: While the over-the-fence power was limited to the early part of the season in Low-A, the continued strides with the bat allowed Rodriguez to perform at High-A. He'll likely start 2023 at the level with a chance for Double-A Chattanooga by season's end.

Fantasy Impact: Acquired in a 2022 deadline deal with the Mets, Rodriguez has transformed his gain by attacking middle-in pitches with a high frequency and spraying everything else. This is a plus hitter with plus wheels. If Rodriguez can get to merely average power, this is a fantasy producing profile in multiple categories across many formats.

Upside Grade: 8D


12. Ricardo Cabrera (3B,SS) ... 5-11, 178 ... R/R ... 19 ... 2022 FA (VZ)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2022Dominican Reds (Dsl)150.253/.363/.3808730.331/5
2023ACL Reds (ACL)143.350/.469/.55913760.605/21
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)19.316/.519/.31621741.000/3

Comments: Toolsy, athletic SS prospect had exceptional stateside debut. Shorter-statured with athletic frame. Upright, slight open stance with easy swing mechanics. Up-the-middle approach is terrific hitting foundation. Strong despite lean frame. Power could come with strength gains and getting to lofted contact consistently. Plus runner. Should stick at SS.

Development Path: Cabrera was one of the best performers in the Arizona Complex League and handled a small-sample Low-A callup swimmingly. He will start at Low-A Daytona in 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Cabrera is the most projectable of the lower minor hitability prospects given the likelihood of strength gains and approach modifications, allowing the bat to tap into above-average power potential. The speed might wane a bit but Cabrera has a chance to become a middle-of-the-order bat, in theory driving in all these on-base studs in the lower minors. 

Upside Grade: 8E


13. Julian Aguiar (RHP) ... 6-3, 180 ... 22 ... 2021 (12) El Camino

2021ACL Reds (Rk_ACL)
2022Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)
2022Dayton Dragons (Midw2)8.06.751.6255.611.32.0.250
2023Dayton Dragons (Midw2)70.11.920.9673.
2023Chattanooga Lookouts (Sou2)

Comments: Athletic, low 3/4s RHP enjoyed breakout season as stuff ticked up. Repeatable delivery, stays on-time with release point. Mixes 4-seam and 2-seam FBs. Commands heavy, arm-side running 2-seamer well. Best pitch is SL with two-plane break, including late sweep and plus command. 11-to-5 CB is also effective weapon and adds a fringe CU. 

Development Path: Aguiar pitched well, split between High-A Dayton and Double-A Chattanooga. He pitched much better in Chattanooga than his numbers indicate. Still, he'll likely head back out to Chattanooga to start 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Aguiar has established a relatively high floor (SP4/SP5) in a relative short time period. The uptick in stuff, combined with his feel for sequencing and command, has created a likely MLB SP. He'll get some whiffs too, which makes him attractive for rostering in most formats.

Upside Grade: 7C


14. Leonardo Balcazar (3B,SS) ... 5-10, 190 ... R/R ... 19 ... 2021 FA (VZ)

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2021Dominican Reds (Dsl)112.259/.346/.53610740.456/8
2022ACL Reds (ACL)143.322/.411/.47611710.434/13
2023Daytona Tortugas (FSL2)68.324/.427/.47116680.591/2

Comments: Athletic SS prospect was on verge of breakout season when a torn ACL ended season prematurely. Shorter in stature with room to grow. Upright stance with simple load and hitting mechanics. Spray approach with linear swing, produces hard contact on the ground and on a line. Approach isn't conducive for power development. Above-average runner. 

Development Path: Balcazar started the season hot, showing an advanced hit tool for Low-A. Expected to be healthy for spring training, there is a chance the Reds move him up to High-A to begin 2024.

Fantasy Impact: Balcazar's hitting ability and defensive foundation creates a high floor for the young SS. If he can get to fringe power, in the 10-15 HR range, it's likely on the back end of a solid average performer. This profile might work best in real life and not in fantasy.

Upside Grade: 8E


15. Sammy Stafura (SS) ... 6-0, 188 ... R/R ... 19 ... 2023 (2) HS (NY) 

YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct%EyeHR/SB
2023ACL Reds (ACL)42.071/.212/.19016450.351/0

Comments: Cold-weather prep prospect drafted by Reds in 2nd round had horrible pro debut with bat. Athletic frame with lean muscular build. Had rep in HS for being contact bat but struck out in nearly half of his AB in ACL. Hit-over-power profile with chance at above-average hit and average power outcome. Plus runner who is an average defender at SS.

Development Path: Stafura's struggles in a small sample isn't anything to worry about. He has an equal chance at starting again in the Arizona Complex League or heading out to Low-A Daytona.

Fantasy Impact: Stafura, who the Reds signed over slot, was so bad during his debut that we're half expecting to hear he had to get contacts or laser eye surgery over the winter. The prospect before his pro debut was a solid, all-around prospect with budding power potential and a history of contact. Hopefully, along with the plus run tool, the hit tool will be back this summer.

Upside Grade: 8E

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