Nick Castellanos could reportedly miss several weeks; will wrist injury change Reds’ trade deadline plans?

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Cincinnati Reds outfielder Nick Castellanos is expected to miss several weeks after being diagnosed with a microfracture in his right wrist, according to MLB Network’s Jon Morosi. Castellanos, a 29-year-old All-Star, has been the Reds’ leading hitter this season. In 368 plate appearances so far, he’s batted .329/.383/.582 (144 OPS+) with 18 home runs and 30 additional extra-base hits. He suffered the fracture after being plunked by a pitch last Friday against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Castellanos’ injury would’ve been unwelcome news regardless of when it occurred, but the Reds have been in a tailspin since the All-Star Break. Including Wednesday’s blowout defeat against the New York Mets, the Reds are now 1-5 since the second half began.

The Reds are still stationed in second place in the National League Central, some 6 1/2 games back of the Milwaukee Brewers, but even that position isn’t secure. The Reds will begin a three-game series with the third-place St. Louis Cardinals, a team they’re a loss up on, on Friday night.

Should the Reds’ slide continue, that, plus Castellanos’ injury, could force them to weigh selling at the deadline. Cincinnati has numerous players who would be of interest to other clubs, such as starters Sonny Gray, Luis Castillo, and Wade Miley. That would mark a philosophical switch from earlier this week, when C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic reported that Cincinnati viewed itself as buyers. 

“If there is something we can do to supplement this team and help this team continue to win ballgames, we’re definitely open to it,” general manager Nick Krall told Rosecrans. 

Health is arguably what the Reds need the most to win games. Castellanos figures to join a number of other notable Reds on the injured list prior to Friday’s game, including infielder Mike Moustakas and relievers Tejay Antone, Michael Lorenzen, and Lucas Sims.

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