Cincinnati Reds second base prospect Shed Long was coming off of an outstanding 2016 season where he hit .293/.371/.471 with 30 doubles, five triples and 15 home runs between Daytona (94 games) and Dayton (38 games). He jumped onto the prospect scene with that season – showing off tools across the board and some of them quite impressive ones.

The Reds sent Shed Long back to Daytona to start 2017. He only spent 38 games there at the end of last year. Things got out to a slow start. In the first eight games he hit just .143/.278/143. Long did have five walks and was hit by a pitch in that stretch. However, the hits simply weren’t finding the grass.

Over the last eight games things have turned around. Shed Long has had hits in seven of those eight games, including multiple hits in four of those games. He has hit .382/.400/.735 over that time. Last night capped off that stretch with a walk-off 2-run home run at home against the St. Lucie Mets. It was the third home run he has hit in the last four games.

Slumps that would go unnoticed if they happened the first week of June are very noticeable when they start the season. After the slow start, all of a sudden Shed Long is hitting .274/.338/.468 and the stats looks much like the top second base prospect in the organization. His .806 OPS is 126 points better than the Florida State League average.

C. Trent Rosecrans and Shed Long are working together on a podcast series called Great American Dream. I listened to the first episode as I worked on writing this article and it’s outstanding so far. The series focuses on Long and his dream and journey to becoming a Major League Baseball player. You can read more information about it, and listen to, subscribe to the podcast and more here at the Cincinnati Enquirer.

28 Responses

  1. Kap

    I have a feeling Long jumps Herrera on the 2nd base depth chart. I know it’s early, but Dilson’s play has been underwhelming and he still has that health issue of his. Some minor league competition isn’t always a bad thing though

    • Doug Gray

      Shed is still two levels lower than Herrera. If Herrera’s shoulder is still an issue by the time Shed gets to Triple-A (perhaps late this year if he continues to hit well), then maybe that’s something you can look at then. Right now, it’s 2 weeks into the season.

    • Wes

      I think sureaz jumped Herrera. Seems like it was suppose to be peraza and Herrera in mid infield for next several years and sureaz seems to be trying to pass both of them. What’s everyone’s thoughts on that?

      • Doug Gray

        Well, Suarez is the third baseman right now, so it’s tough to play that game. I understand where you’re going with it, though. Suarez and Senzel can’t both play third base. Assuming Senzel turns into what most expect him to, he’s a quality big leaguer. At the same time, Suarez already had two full big league seasons under his belt, is just 25-years-old and is out to a great start. Whether he can keep it up or not is another story (I mean, obviously, he’s not going to keep going at this pace, but has he taken that next step forward to possibly being an All-Star third baseman?). There’s still plenty of time to figure it out. Senzel is in Daytona. That’s still quite a ways from Cincinnati. Many scouts believe he’s capable of handling second base. We’ve seen Suarez handle shortstop enough that he *should* also be able to handle the position. It’ll be interesting to see how it all plays out.

      • kevin zook

        I think let it play out an see who the real Suarez is..

  2. kevin zook

    really like Long he is just short, but got some pop an has a good feel to hitting… be nice to have a LHH at 2nd…. lil worried about Herrera anyway… bum shoulder never good

  3. Michael B. Green

    I think it is very safe to say that between Suarez and Senzel; Peraza, Suarez, Trahan and Al-Rod; and Peraza, Herrera, Suarez and Long, Cinci is set at 3B, SS and 2B for a lengthy term and should not need to look at free agency there.

    The key for Long is to maintain his plate discipline at each level and improve with the glove. I really like the kid and hope he draws comparisons to Little Joe of the Big Red Machine.

    • Doug Gray

      If you listen to the C. Trent Rosecrans podcast I linked to, Eric Davis makes that comparison – but without the true game changing speed that Morgan had. I’d say it’s not likely he’ll (Long) will have the big walk rates, either. But, those two things were what made Morgan a Hall of Famer, too, so it’s not really a slight on Shed Long to say he’s not in that category.

      • kevin zook

        Could long be the left hand version on offense to Lindor? I know Lindor a ss but just saying on just offense?

      • MK

        Again,Long isn’t close to Lindor on speed or glove. He might be closer in comparison to Scooter Gennett.

      • Doug Gray

        Gennett doesn’t have the pop Shed has. Might not be as fast – but I’m not entirely sure on this one.

    • kevin zook

      that why just compared him to lindor on offense not d.. may walk the same… approach the same when lindor hits LH… about same in power.. won’t compare Long to Lindor on D or speed arm or anything else though lol

  4. kevin zook

    I agree just not sure how long we have Suarez for yet.. will he be around when good again?

    Long has improved on that already.. does need to maintain it higher goes up though.. Love long, but lil joe was fast, an stole bases like crazy.. hoping long can become a borderline all star then go from there

    • davidmac84

      Reds control Suarez through 2020. They should be attempting to contend next year.
      With an advanced college bat: most analyst would expect Senzel to hit the Major League Roster some point in 2018/ and if he is not on the MLB roster starting in 2019 something has gone wrong. I would keep Suarez at 3rd Base move Senzel to 2nd and so far it looks like Peraza can play around a league average defense at SS.

      • kevin zook

        agree if Suarez is who we hope he is. You move Senzel to 2nd which is was hoping happens… means both beasting it , mayb jay bell type at 2nd

  5. Brad

    2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
    C BARNHART MESORACO BARNHART BARNHART T. STEPHENSON
    1B VOTTO VOTTO VOTTO VOTTO VOTTO
    2B PERAZA PERAZA PERAZA HERRERA HERRERA
    3B SUAREZ SENZEL SENZEL SENZEL SENZEL
    SS COZART SUAREZ SUAREZ SUAREZ A. RODRIGUEZ

    C2 TURNER BARNHART TURNER TURNER TURNER
    1B/3B ALCANTARA HERRERA HERRERA HERRERA HERRERA
    2B/SS GENNETT GENNETT GENNETT PERAZA PERAZA

    Have to think Gennett is a one-year guy. Has two years of arbitration remaining, but I would imagine Reds would prefer Herrera to be backup 2B/3B at 500k/year for 3 years over Gennett at 3M/year for 2.

  6. Simon Cowell

    He’s to short. He’ll never make it at the MLB level.

    • kevin zook

      hope wrong simon for the reds sake.. would be huge if he turns out.. think an hope just short in height… think built good relative to his height

    • Doug Gray

      This is either sarcasm, or you’ve never seen him play.

    • WVRon

      He’s 5′ 8″. Jose Altuve is (generously) 5′ 6″.

  7. MK

    If you look at the analytics, which I know many here do, the statisticcs are against anyone 5′ 9″ or under holding up more than three years of a big league 162 game schedule. Of course there are exceptions like Altuve and Morgan, but with the stats in mind smaller guys are not as readily signed or given opportunities. I believe it is a reason the Reds quickly discarded Ronald Torreyes even though he was one of the better hitters in the organization

    • Doug Gray

      Torreyes wasn’t built like Shed is, though. Torreyes was both short and skinny (granted, he was a teenager, too). Shed is short, but he is not small at all.

    • HavaKlu

      Actually, most of the guys 5’9″ on ML rosters are performing well above average—–Betts, Pedroia, Eaton, Juan Ramirez and Josh Harrison. And off the top of my head, there are 3 SS of the past, Aparicio, Vizquel and Patek who had long, productive careers.

      • MK

        The fact that you can name them all in a short post proves the opportunities are limited for those less than average major league height. Some of their nicknames point out how unusual the size is or was as well. Eaton is Spanky or Mighty Mouse, Aparicio was “Lil Louie”, Morgan was Little Joe, etc.

  8. kevin zook

    agree Doug think long just short, he not built small though.. plus just 21 can fill out more.. may not grow any taller though lol

    • Doug Gray

      He’s probably not going to fill out any more than he already has unless it’s bad weight. He’s a thick (muscular) guy already. Not much room to pack anything else on that frame.

  9. kevin zook

    good point doug agree with you just worded it wrong my fault