Cincinnati selected the Tennessee product with the second pick in the 2016 draft. The right-handed hitter posted strong minor league numbers and was a consensus top prospect preceding his 2019 debut. Senzel never found consistent success against big league pitchers, though. Over parts of five seasons, he owns a .239/.302/.369 batting line.
Senzel spent the 2022 campaign as the Reds primary center fielder. Cincinnati hoped that a move back to his natural third base position would help him find another level offensively. While Senzel started the year hitting well, particularly against left-handed pitching, he encountered a slump in June. He finished the season with a .236/.297/.399 line with 13 homers across 330 MLB plate appearances.
The Reds briefly sent Senzel back to Triple-A in the second half. He finished the year in the majors but always seemed a likely non-tender. The Reds have a number of talented younger infield options, with Matt McLain, Elly De La Cruz and Noelvi Marte taking a lot of reps on the left side. That didn’t leave much room for Senzel, whom MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projected for a $3MM salary if tendered a contract.
A non-tender sends a player directly to free agency without being placed on waivers. The 28-year-old can now explore opportunities with other teams. Senzel’s status as a former top prospect and career .286/.334/.459 line with the platoon advantage could find him a big league deal elsewhere. The Nationals, A’s, Royals, Diamondbacks and Tigers stand out as speculative candidates for a flier on a third baseman.