The Cincinnati Reds have called up outfielder TJ Hopkins from Triple-A. The Reds placed TJ Friedl on the injured list with a hamstring injury this afternoon and that opened up the need for another outfielder on the roster. Hopkins, who has been crushing the ball for the Louisville Bats this season, was added to the 40-man roster and called up to take his place.

It has been a breakout kind of season for Hopkins. Passed over by the Reds in adding him to the 40-man roster last November and then passed over by teams in the Rule 5 draft, Hopkins has come out of the gates in 2023 swinging and swinging well. In 24 games during April he hit .329/.396/.561 with 10 doubles and three home runs.

Since then he’s taken things in a slightly different direction, but still a highly productive direction. Since the start of May the 26-year-old outfielder has played in 27 games and has hit .347 with four doubles and four home runs. The power has dropped off a little bit from where things were in April. But while the power has dropped off, he’s been walking nearly as often as he’s struck out – with 20 walks and 24 strikeouts in 116 plate appearances in this stretch. That’s led to a .466 on-base percentage over his last 27 games. In total he’s hitting .341/.437/.540 on the season for the Bats.

A 9th round pick in 2019 out of the University of South Carolina, Hopkins can do plenty of things on the field. He can hit the ball a mile – he’s got a 468-foot home run this season. Despite a lack of stolen bases, he’s got above-average speed. In the outfield he’s spent much of his time in the corners, but he’s got a good enough arm to play in right field and he can cover you in center if you need him to. Of late he’s had a more refined approach at the plate – like many of the Louisville hitters have shown – and it’s paid off in the batters box as he’s put up the best offensive season of his career to this point.

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4 Responses

  1. Bigbill

    It is about time. Big fan. Love guys that play solid defense and regularly hit the ball hard. Hopkins is a possible future player for the Reds. It makes no sense at this point to not mix in the kids and see what you have. CES and Elly need to be up soon and drop Casalli and Myers. Neither are part of the next 5 years. Getting these kids to get their transitions to the big leagues out of the way we see pretty much where we need any positional players as well as define and trade opportunities for pitching.

  2. RedsGettingBetter

    TJ Hopkins really deserves this calling up, he’s consistently hit very well this season. One important thing in Hopkins and Louisville Bats overall is that hitting dispcipline shown along the way this year . Good job has been done by the hitting coach who is Alex Peláez if I’m not wrong…

  3. Fred Johnson

    I agree with RGB : the minor league call-ups seem to have a better plate approach this year. I would guess though that this is an institutional mandate throughout MiLB, with the strikeout rates having exploded over the last decade making the game much less watchable. Watching the Reds stay in most games has been refreshing.