Jose Barrero was put in a very tough spot in 2020 when he was asked to play in the Major Leagues despite not having any experience above High-A in the minors. The results weren’t great from an offensive standpoint, but that’s not surprising, either. With a minor league season happening in 2021, Barrero was put in a much better situation to succeed and did he ever do just that.
Cincinnati sent Jose Barrero to Double-A where he joined the Chattanooga Lookouts to begin his season. In the first series of the year he went 7-23 with 2 doubles, a triple, 2 home runs, 8 RBI, and 5 walks. It was a sign of things to come. The hits kept coming for Barrero and it didn’t even take two full months before his time with the Lookouts was over. After 40 games he was hitting .300/.367/.481 in the Double-A South and that was more than enough for the Reds front office to promote the shortstop up to Triple-A.
It was a slow start with Louisville. In his first 10 games with the Bats Jose Barrero hit .171/.273/.343. At that point he headed off to Colorado to play in the Futures Game. While playing at Coors he crushed a 426-foot home run and walked while scoring runs each time he went to the plate. When he returned to join the Bats he never looked back. In the 36 games he played with Louisville moving forward from that point he hit .338/.421/.647 with 10 doubles and 11 home runs.
Between the two stops in the minors in 2021 Jose Barrero played in just 85 games before he was called up to Cincinnati late in August where he remained for the rest of the year. He would hit .303/.380/.539 in 380 plate appearances for Chattanooga and Louisville. That came with 19 doubles, a triple, 19 home runs, and 16 stolen bases.
Jose Barrero finished 3rd in the organization with a .303 average among players in full-season baseball. He led the organization in home runs, RBI, slugging, and OPS. Offensively he had the award in the bag on it’s own, but toss in that he also did it at a premium defensive position and it was a runaway victory.