The Cincinnati Reds have three Top 100 prospects

Connor Phillips (Photo: Redleg Nation Staff)

The Cincinnati Reds have three Top 100 prospects

Three Cincinnati Reds prospects rank in the top 100 in Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus, respectively. The same three Reds prospects were on both lists, which were made public this week.

The most notable prospect for the Reds is Noelvi Marte. Marte, the top prospect for the team, came in at number 23 on Baseball America’s list and number 25 on Baseball Prospectus. The infielder was traded by the Seattle Mariners for Luis Castillo in July of 2022, bringing him to the Cincinnati organization. He progressed from Double-A to Triple-A and finally the major leagues in the 2023 season. His OPS was very constant throughout all levels. He recorded an OPS of.820 in both Double-A and Triple-A baseball. He had an OPS of.822 in the 35 games he played with the Reds at the end of the season.

The next-highest ranked Reds prospect was Rhett Lowder. After the draft, Lowder—the team’s first-round selection in the 2023 draft—did not throw a pitch. In 2023, he had a 15-0 record at Wake Forest with an ERA of 1.87, 24 walks, and 143 strikeouts in 120.1 innings. Although the right-hander was #60 on Baseball America, he was just outside the top 50 on Baseball Prospectus.

Connor Phillips, a pitcher, was the last prospect from the Cincinnati organization to be included on the list. Like Marte, he started the season with Chattanooga in Double-A, advanced to Triple-A Louisville, and then made his big league debut with the Reds in the latter part of the season. While the league was also experimenting with a pre-tacked baseball in the first half of last year, and pitching was noticeably better than in previous years, Phillips was very good in the first half with the Lookouts. Following his promotion to Triple-A, Phillips’ strikeout rate precipitously dropped and his ERA skyrocketed from 3.34 to 4.69 due to control issues. His ERA increased to 6.97 after he joined Cincinnati for five starts at the end of the season. Naturally, at the time that Phillips was one of the youngest pitchers in each league, all of that occurred.

The Reds acquire a second minor league team

Cincinnati’s farm system now includes a second team. The Dominican Summer League is exempt from the restrictions on the number of clubs an organization may have in the United States due to roster spaces (165 starting in 2024). There were already 20 corporations, or several, with two teams in the league. The Reds are a new team in the league this year, thus they join that category.

The Louisville Bats, Chattanooga Lookouts, Dayton Dragons, Daytona Tortugas, Arizona Complex level Reds, and the two Dominican Summer League Reds teams round out the organization’s seven minor level teams. That is still one team less than what the Reds had in 2019 before to Major League Baseball intervening and eliminating all rookie leagues at the non-complex level, which led to the team’s elimination from both the Greeneville Reds and the Billings Mustangs.