With the recent injury to outfielder Ryan Ludwick, the Cincinnati Reds had a big decision to make about who would take his spot on the 25-man roster. By Wednesday night, they had chosen outfielder Derrick Robinson to make his major league debut.
Robinson was drafted by the Kansas City Royals organization in 2006, and played in Kansas City’s minor league system until coming to the Reds in 2013. The ultimate decision to have Robinson make his major league debut was due in most part to his very successful spring training.
The outfielder batted .300 in spring training, and is a true center fielder that could end up being a great late-inning defensive replacement for Shin-Soo-Choo. Robinson doesn’t have much power, but Dusty Baker says that his speed will be used often in late inning pinch running situations.
The Reds had two other options to replace Ludwick in power hitter Donald Lutz and speedster Billy Hamilton, but team management felt neither was truly ready for the major leagues.
It’s only a matter of time before Hamilton gets his shot though, and if he continues his success at the Triple-A level, that could be in May or June. The one thing lacking from this Reds team is speed. Only Brandon Phillips and Choo are likely to get over 20 stolen bases, so the addition of Robinson (and later Hamilton) will give this Reds team will another weapon to their already-loaded artillery.
Vinny Carozza is a MLB/Cincinnati Reds writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @VinnyCarozza